UK apprentice numbers hit all-time high

17 October 2013 #SMMT News

A record number of people are taking part in apprenticeships, according to figures released today.

The numbers, published by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, show that almost 860,000 people were enrolled in apprenticeships in 2012/13, with more than 1.5 million starting apprentice work since 2010.

This news comes months after the launch of government’s Automotive Sector Strategy, which aims to improve the quality and quantity of apprentices in the automotive industry. Following an increased enrolment in automotive training programmes in recent times, members of the Automotive Council expect to create an additional 7,600 apprenticeships and 1,700 graduate roles over the next five years.

On a broader level, the Sector Strategy identifies a growing appetite for apprenticeships in the manufacturing industry as a whole: while only 18 per cent of manufacturing employers currently provide apprenticeships, 43 per cent plan to do so in the future.

Matthew Hancock, Minister of State for Skills and Enterprise, said, “These figures show that a record 858,900 people participated in apprenticeships last year, which is almost 370,000 more than in 2009/10.

“This is good news for the economy, and good news for those getting the skills they need to prosper. There are now more options than ever before with a focus on the quality and rigour that people and employers want from apprenticeships.

“Our insistence that they must have a minimum duration, involve on-the-job training, and respond to the needs of employers means that it is rapidly becoming the new norm to take an apprenticeship or go to university.”

To find out more about the Automotive Sector Strategy, click here.

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