Manufacturers should consider apprenticeships as a way of fixing the industry’s skills shortage, a UK government minister has said, following the success of a soft drink producer’s apprenticeship scheme.
Britvic has recently welcomed a new intake of electrical and mechanical engineers, after awarding full-time positions to everybody graduating from the program in the last year. The award-winning scheme signals the company’s commitment to advancing employment in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), which now make up almost a third of all roles at the firm.
More than two dozen Britvic apprentices are currently enrolled as part of a four-year course, with graduates educated to a minimum NVQ level 3 standard. It welcomed the focus provided by National Apprenticeship Week, which will seek to increase awareness and participation in apprenticeship and traineeship schemes until 13 March.
Skills minister Nick Boles said: “Apprenticeships make absolute business sense while providing life changing opportunities for young people across the country. I would urge employers of all sizes to follow Britvic’s lead and to consider how they can make apprenticeships part of their growth strategy.”
Sue Skinner, Great Britain and Ireland HR director for Britvic, added: “As highlighted by National Apprenticeship Week, developing the skills of the next generation is crucial, and at Britvic we believe it is key to our continued success.
“We are proud that our award-winning scheme provides excellent youth employment opportunities in Leeds, Rugby, Norwich and Beckton. We are also delighted that all of our recent graduating class have developed these much-needed engineering skills and are now working full-time with the company.”
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