County Training Support for Apprenticeships

30th August 2012

County Training Support for Apprenticeships With £1500 grants to support the recruitment of Apprentices and a free recruitment service currently available, Jill Barcroft from County Training has been talking about the benefits of Apprenticeships:

Apprenticeships allow you to invest in your organisation’s future. No matter how large or small your organisation, Apprenticeships give you the chance to develop the skilled staff you need for your business. With the support of County Training, an apprenticeship can make your organisation more effective, efficient, productive and competitive by addressing any skills gaps directly and enhancing the skills already held.”

“Apprenticeships are a mixture of on and off the job learning and all employees over 16, whether they are new recruits or an existing member of staff, can take advantage of this funded training, providing they do not possess a degree.”

£1500 grants available to support the recruitment of Apprentices

There are currently grants available of up to £1500 for organisations with less than 1000 employees that are looking to recruit a 16-24 year old Apprentice. Businesses that have not employed an Apprentice in the last 12 months are eligible, with up to 10 grants available per organisation.  Grant availability is limited; therefore County Training is encouraging employers to act quickly in order to take advantage of this initiative.

There are also wage incentives of up to £2,275 available through the Youth Contract, to employers who are able to support a 16-24 year old who is currently on the Work Programme with a paid work placement of 26 weeks.

Jill added, “County Training works with a variety of young people who are bright, enthusiastic and looking for an opportunity to build on their experience and start a career.”

For further information and to find out if your business is eligible, please contact County Training on 0345 6789023 or email countytraining@shropshire.gov.uk

Free Recruitment Service

As part of their service to employers, County Training has dedicated employer liaison professionals, who will provide you with the following free recruitment support service:

  • Discuss and understand your recruitment requirements for Apprentices, supporting you with writing job descriptions and person specifications.
  • Advertise your Apprenticeship vacancies on “Apprenticeship Vacancy Matching Service” –  a national, job website for Apprentices
  • Manage the applications generated through “Apprenticeship Vacancy Matching  Service”
  • Provide you with Curriculum Vitae from suitable applicants
  • Agree start times for the Apprenticeship
  • Support you throughout the Apprenticeship application process

The Apprenticeship Programme Structure

Apprenticeships are currently available at two levels. Level 2 Apprenticeships take approximately 12 months, whilst Level 3 Apprenticeships can take up to 18 months to complete.

A County Training assessor will visit the candidate in the workplace once every 3 to 4 weeks and spend approximately 1 - 2 hours with the individual to verify their competence in the workplace using a variety of assessment methods, which include discussion, observation, photographic evidence and witness testimonies.

Action plans are discussed and agreed at every visit and performance is reviewed every 10 weeks throughout the qualification.

For 16-18 year olds, the Apprenticeship programme is fully funded. As their employer you are required to pay them a training allowance of £2.65 per hour.

Visit www.shropshire.gov.uk/countytraining.nsf for further information on Apprenticeships and training available to support your business. Alternatively call 0345 6789023 or email countytraining@shropshire.gov.uk

Apprenticeships in Action

County Training has provided the following case study for Goldstone Hall in Market Drayton, a member 0f Shropshire Tourism.

Goldstone Hall develop staff through Apprenticeships

Since 2003, owner of Goldstone Hall John Cushing has utilised vocational training and Apprenticeships to develop existing employees, whilst offering new opportunities to young people looking to enter his workforce.

Victoria Cushing helps to manage the team on a daily basis, which includes 19 year old Thomas Tapley, a Professional Cookery Apprentice. Victoria has seen first-hand the valuable contribution Apprenticeships bring to the business, commenting; “the skills and knowledge Thomas has gained and brought to his role as a trainee chef, through the Apprenticeship programme, has had an extremely positive impact on the day to day running of kitchen operations. He is enthusiastic and willing to learn new things, continuously developing and delivering – Thomas is an invaluable asset here.”

She goes on to add; “existing employees have also gone on to complete Apprenticeships, which has enabled them to gain recognition for the skills they already poses and gain additional skills to enhance their professional development. As result staff are motivated, happy and confident in their job roles, which helps us to retain our good work ethics and high levels of service that are provided to guests. I would certainly endorse Apprenticeships and vocational training for other Shropshire businesses.”