Smaller engineering firms now able to offer apprenticeships

Small
and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) will have access to structured Modern
Apprenticeship schemes for the first time.

The
training schemes are being delivered by the Sector Skills Council for Science
and Engineering (Semta) and HR service provider Xchanging, who hope to recruit,
train and manage 200 Modern Apprentices a year.

Over
a period of 42 months, candidates will undertake a combination of formal and
on-the-job training, which will include spending time at an engineering SME
where they will complete their apprenticeship.

Alan
Bailey, head of HR at Xchanging, said that there was a desperate need for
apprenticeships and the UK could not survive solely on a country full of
graduates.

"There
has been a decline in the skills base in the UK and cost pressures are being
brought to bear on SMEs," he said. "We hope to take a big
administrative burden away from them."

By Michael Millar

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