A leap year occurs just once every four years and encourages breaking with tradition. For many small to medium employers looking to grow, but struggling in the current climate, an apprenticeship could provide a cost effective recruitment solution which they perhaps have never considered before and gives them access to a new apprenticeship grant with a value of £1,500.
Robin Ghurbhurun, Deputy Principal at Newcastle College, said: “A leap year is a time when people break with tradition and try something new. In keeping with this theme we are encouraging employers to consider the apprenticeship route as an alternative way to recruit talented and motivated staff that they can develop within the business. There is no doubt that small to medium enterprises are feeling the effects of the current economic climate, but at the same time are showing resilience and the ambition to expand and grow despite the recession. An apprentice could be just the solution for these employers and with the added incentive of an apprenticeship grant, it really is the time to consider taking a leap into apprenticeships.”
Newcastle College is one of the region’s leading providers of apprenticeships and works with over a thousand businesses each year in the North East providing them with impartial advice and a free recruitment and matching service. A few months ago the college challenged the region’s employers to help tackle the issue of unemployment and support the local economy by taking on just one apprentice. At the same time it launched an innovative campaign, the Power of One, which outlines the number of ways that an organisation can significantly benefit by investing in an apprentice, developing them within the workplace and shaping them to compliment the skills of the existing workforce.
Employers who commit to taking on a young apprentice can now receive a grant with a value of £1,500. The grant is available to all small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) which employ less than 250 staff who are recruiting an apprentice for the first time. There are up to 40,000 grants available through the National Apprenticeship Service which can be accessed with the help of providers like Newcastle College.
Robin added: “Employers should not underestimate the power of one apprentice. We work with businesses of ranging sizes and sectors who consistently tell us that apprenticeships have transformed their recruitment strategy and brought a new and exciting dimension to training and developing the workforce.”