Research has shown that for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) there are real and numerous benefits of taking on an apprentice. In fact businesses experience an average increase in productivity of £214 a week when they hire apprentices.
Apprenticeships have also contributed £34 billion to the UK economy in 2014. The benefits reported by businesses who had taken on an apprentice are not just financial they also include improved skill levels, service and morale. Through apprenticeships businesses have an opportunity to demonstrate corporate social responsibility by opening the door to a career for a young unemployed person and making a real difference to their life chances.
This week is National Apprenticeship Week and throughout the week hundreds of businesses, schools and training organisations have been holding events to raise the profile of apprenticeships. While taking on an apprentice can seem like a big commitment to the busy small business owner, support is available. Within the National Apprenticeship Service there are teams ready to offer advice and guidance to employers considering apprenticeship programmes.
In addition to this, financial assistance in the form of the Apprenticeship
Grant is available for employers recruiting 16 to 24 year old apprentices to help alleviate the modest, but nevertheless significant, commitment of taking on an apprentice.
Since 2010 two million people have enrolled onto an apprenticeship scheme however more businesses offering apprenticeship vacancies are still needed to help young people into employment.
To find out more about Apprenticeship Week visit www.gov.uk/naw2015.