Apprenticeships work! Celebrating NAW 2018

Apprenticeships can have a positive impact on business productivity, staff retention and the provision of industry specific technical skills, which is why we’re proud to be a part of the eleventh National Apprenticeship Week. This year we are focussing on helping local employers to understand how apprenticeships can benefit their business, something that is more important than ever given recent policy shifts.

Spring of 2017 saw changes in the way apprenticeships are funded, including the introduction of an apprenticeship levy for businesses with a paybill of over 3 million. The apprenticeship levy encourages employers to develop or upscale apprenticeship activity within their business.

This is an opportunity we plan to make the most of, as apprenticeships can develop talent and address the technical skills gaps we need to foster growth. For sectors like construction and engineering, that are suffering from skills gaps and facing knowledge loss through an ageing workforce, apprenticeships are an essential long term solution.

We are working to help employers recognise that apprenticeships can deliver the skilled and inspired employees needed for high performing organisations. How’s Business, our Growth Hub has published a comprehensive introduction to apprenticeships in their digital eBook. This provides information on recruitment of apprentices, what to do to turn existing staff into apprentices and the support and funding that is available.

There are many great examples in our region of how businesses are already working well to create apprenticeship opportunities using their levy. We have utilised the expertise of local levy payer Nestle who are reaping the rewards from developing a highly skilled and loyal workforce through their investment in apprenticeships. Jill Coyle, Apprentice Programme Lead at Nestle gives us her take on the levy and offers advice on how to use the levy in a manageable and impactful way in a business through our online video guides, which can be viewed here.

This week we will also be working with colleagues from Humber Enterprise Partnership and York St John University to consult with employers on what they need from a new interactive toolkit designed to support employers with workforce planning and the apprenticeship levy strategy.

If you would like to support National Apprenticeship Week 2018 by sharing your positive experience of apprenticeships, the simplest way is through the National Apprenticeship Week media channels. Use the #NAW2018 tag to link your social media content to the campaign and encourage other supporters of apprenticeships to do the same.

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