Wednesday, November 22, 2017
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New Measures to Promote Apprenticeships

Jason Holt

The government has outlined new measures to enable small and medium enterprises (SME's) to take full advantage of the usefulness of apprenticeships in the future.

Many such SMEs' are unaware of the huge potential that apprentices have to offer them and their businesses and it is hoped that a new approach and more information will enable SME's to fully leverage the huge potential that an apprentice can offer them.

The announcement came following a report from jeweller and social entrepreneur Jason Holt who was commissioned earlier this year in February. In the report Holt pointed to a lack of awareness among small businesses about the benefits of taking on apprentices and how to recruit and train them as the main reason behind their lack of use. In order to facilitate a better understanding of the benefits the Skills Minister, John Hayes, outlined several measures, which included, amongst others a promise to work with those who advise SME's to promote apprenticeships. He also mentioned measures to ensure adequate training would be available and how improvements to the grant system would further enable smaller businesses especially, to implement the necessary measures to take on apprentices.

Holt explained, "Whilst apprenticeships offer undoubted growth opportunities for businesses, not enough SMEs are taking advantage. This is because they have an outdated view of apprenticeships, are often in the dark, and frequently do not receive the specific training provision their apprentices need. My recommendations are intended to address these issues with Government, employers and providers all playing a part."

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: ?"Only a small minority of SMEs currently employ apprentices. Many of the rest are missing out on an effective way of growing and up-skilling their businesses. ??"We hope that the measures announced today will make a difference by raising awareness of the benefits of apprenticeships amongst SMEs and making it as easy as possible for these businesses to take on an apprentice".

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