Businesses and organisations that employ up to 1,000 employees could be eligible for a grant to help take on an apprentice.
Until March 2014, the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) will provide up to 40,000 apprenticeship grants, with a value of £1,500 each, to eligible employers who commit to employ one or more 16-to-24-year-old apprentices. Businesses and organisations can apply for these grants via a training provider such as East Riding of Yorkshire Council employment and skills team.
Eligible employers are those who have never employed an apprentice before or who have not employed an apprentice within the last 12 months. The £1,500 grant is in addition to the Government funding already available for the training costs of the apprenticeship framework.
For more information or to check eligibility, call the employment and skills team on (01482) 887670.
One organisation already working with East Riding of Yorkshire Council is Fisher Security Limited, based in Goole.
Fisher Security specialises in the installation, maintenance and monitoring of CCTV, access control and intruder and fire alarm systems for customers across the Yorkshire region. The company has recently employed an apprentice from the council and has taken advantage of the apprenticeship AGE 16-24 to do this.
Fisher Security already runs engineering apprenticeships, but it is the first time that they have recruited an apprentice into an administration role. They were keen to employ a local, young person who demonstrated the commitment and enthusiasm to work for them. They found out about AGE 16-24 via a mail shot from the council, got in touch and a representative came out to see them with a number of CVs.
Sarah Fisher, working in accounts for Fisher Security, said: “Our business and administration apprentice, Jade, has settled in well. She is starting off on reception duty, but we hope to progress her into the accounts team in due course. I’d recommend that any local organisation considers offering a local, young person an apprenticeship. We’ve found out through this process that there are young people out there who demonstrate the commitment and enthusiasm to work for us, but don’t necessarily have the work experience and skills. An apprenticeship gives them a chance to get the skills and experience and get a wage at the same time. Also, the whole process of recruiting an apprentice was easy from start to finish.”
The council assisted Fisher Security in finding candidates suitable for the role of business administration apprentice. Fisher was told all about the AGE 16-24 grant available and a representative came out to see the company with suitable CVs of candidates. The vacancy was also posted on the NAS vacancy matching service.
Jade Robinson, 20, was successful in getting the business and admin apprentice post. She said: “I found out about the apprenticeship vacancy because I was already doing a customer services apprenticeship that was coming to an end. I re-applied to the apprenticeship pool, because I wanted to continue working toward a level 3 qualification. I’m pleased I was successful because it means that I can continue learning while I’m still earning. I’m really enjoyed this role, so fingers crossed I’ll be taken on as a permanent employee when this apprenticeship finishes. The job is also local to me which is a big bonus.”
Councillor Jane Evison, cabinet portfolio holder for economic development, tourism and rural issues at East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: “This scheme not only provides an opportunity to get someone into work but also aims to help small businesses in what are very challenging times.
“The council is committed to providing practical support and assistance to the local business community and to young jobseekers and we hope that they will both be encouraged to find out more about the apprenticeship scheme.
“The council would urge any eligible East Riding business to consider applying for an AGE grant and taking on an apprentice or apprentices.”
If you’re aged between 16 and 24 and want to join the council’s apprenticeship pool, visit www.recruiteastriding.co.uk