Benefits of recruiting apprentices

SIR - National Apprenticeship Week has just taken place and I would like to thank everyone who helped make it such a success. Last year more than 17,000 apprentices completed their apprenticeships in the South West — an increase on the previous year of 37

SIR - National Apprenticeship Week has just taken place and I would like to thank everyone who helped make it such a success.

Last year more than 17,000 apprentices completed their apprenticeships in the South West - an increase on the previous year of 37 per cent.

That means businesses, voluntary bodies and public sector organisations throughout our region are clearly recognising the benefits and recruiting more and more apprentices.

It makes sense. In a YouGov poll carried out in 2009, 80 per cent of employers surveyed said that apprentices make their workplace more productive. Companies also report that apprentices are more likely to stay on as long-term employees and that the initial investment costs are more than made up for by the income gained from apprenticeships.


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During Apprenticeship Week, we announced the launch of AGE (Apprenticeship Grant for Employers).

The scheme offers employers �2,500 for each 16 and 17-year-old apprentice recruited before March 31. Given that the National Apprenticeship Service already funds 100 per cent of the training costs for apprentices aged 18 and under, that is a pretty good deal and one that many businesses are already taking up.

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Apprenticeships are nothing new - they have been around for hundreds of years. What is new is the huge range of opportunities now available, from veterinary nursing to publishing and from engineering to air stewarding.

National Apprenticeship Week helped raise the profile of what modern day apprentices do and the difference they can make.

We want to keep that momentum going so please help us and continue to spread the word. Visit:

www.apprenticeships.org.uk if you want to find out more.

Dr John Chudley,

South West Director,

National Apprenticeship

Service

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