A new online toolkit created by the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Skills Hub to help businesses get to grips with apprenticeships is now live.
Covering everything from funding and practical tips to processes and support, the Apprenticeship Toolkit is aimed at businesses thinking about recruiting their first apprentice and those offering apprenticeships to existing members of staff.
The toolkit looks to address the common misconceptions surrounding apprenticeships and showcases the experiences of local employers.
“Apprenticeships are a cost-effective route for businesses to develop the skills that they need right up to degree level among both new and existing staff,” explained Josh Hoole, project manager of the Skills Hub, an EU-funded service to help businesses develop through skills and training.
“The Apprenticeship Toolkit showcases the positive business benefits of apprenticeships and provides easy-to-understand information to help employers decide the best option for their business and employees.”
The Apprenticeship Toolkit is just one of the ways that the Skills Hub seeks to help businesses make the most of apprenticeships. In partnership with the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly LEP and the Cornwall Chamber of Commerce, the project recently hosted an apprenticeship webinar which was attended by over 30 local employers. The Skills Hub also has a team of skills experts who provide support to businesses on a one-to-one basis.
“We work directly with businesses to find the right apprenticeship, identify any funding and then introduce them to appropriate training providers,” added Hoole. “But we’re not just about apprenticeships, we help businesses access all types of training, from sales and marketing to management and finance.”
Tony Sampson from Naked Solar in Newquay is one of the many local employers seeing his staff flourish through the modern apprenticeship scheme as the result of Skills Hub support. He said: “Apprenticeships are good for our team, good for business and it makes work so much more enjoyable when you can see people find a path to a really productive, lucrative and fulfilling career.”
The Apprenticeship Toolkit forms part of a wider Skills Toolkit which provides free resources across a range of business areas. It has already been used by over 100 businesses and includes all the tools needed to undertake a business skills review and conduct effective staff appraisals. There’s also downloadable and customisable templates to create an Equality and Diversity Policy and information on improving sustainability.
The Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Skills Hub is part funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) and match funded by Cornwall Council and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise.