Employers must be given incentives to encourage high-quality apprenticeships, according to a report by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) today.
The report follows the Prime Minister’s speech on Monday 11 March, at the start of National Apprenticeship Week, calling for apprenticeships to become the “new normal” for young people not attending university.
The key recommendation of the UKCES report is that employers should be entitled to incentives because “for too long, employers have been asked to engage with government-led skills initiatives underpinned by unsustainable levels of public funding”.
Charlie Mayfield, chairman of the John Lewis Partnership and chairman of UKCES, said: “The changes we put forward in this report will challenge us all: employers, government, colleges and unions. But, at its heart, what we are recommending is a long-term commitment to identifying and investing in the skills and talents our economy really needs.
“Employers need to take responsibility for generating training opportunities for young people, which are more relevant and more valuable. To support this, colleges and training providers will be freed from having to ‘sell’ government’s agenda to employers.”
Scott Johnson, commissioner of UKCES added: “As a small business owner, a direct incentive would encourage me to give an opportunity to a young person and at the same time would give me the buying power to get the skills my business needs for growth.”
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