Electrotechnical apprenticeships for 2021/2022 has got off to a positive start with nearly 4000 new apprentices recruited across England in the first three months of the academic year, The Electrotechnical Skills Partnership (TESP) has reported.
Figures from The Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education show that the intake of electrical apprentices remained strong throughout the coronavirus pandemic, demonstrating the value employers place on apprenticeships as the preferred route for training.
Currently there are around 28,000 apprentices in training in England, with nearly 17,000 of these under the age of 19. Over 80% of these apprentices are employed by non-levy paying companies, highlighting the strong industry tradition of apprentice recruitment amongst small employers.
For those who cannot get an apprenticeship and don’t have a Level 3 qualification, the Government’s ‘Lifetime Skills Guarantee’ is currently funding the industry Level 3 Technical Diploma* or, for those with work experience, the Level 3 NVQ** which includes AM2. Both qualifications form part of TESP’s industry approved training routes to becoming fully qualified.
Since the launch of the Lifetime Skills Guarantee, hundreds of adults have taken advantage of the funding for industry recognised electrical training and benefitted from upskilling. From April this year, any adult in England who is earning under £18,525 annually, or is unemployed, can also access one of these free qualifications – even if they already have a Level 3 qualification or higher.
The popularity of electrical apprenticeships and the Level 3 courses are also reflected in a growing number of people accessing the Electrical Careers website for information and guidance. From 2020 to 2021 the site not only doubled its number of visitors, but also received triple the amount of page views on the previous year.
“The current apprenticeship intake figures are extremely encouraging, but demand for apprenticeships continues to outstrip supply and we need more employers to get involved if we are to address the skills shortage,” says Ruth Devine, Chair of TESP and Managing Director of SJD Electrical.
“There are no short cuts to becoming a qualified electrician, so it’s excellent to see there is interest in not only apprenticeships, but also Level 3 qualifications that are backed by the industry and form part of the approved, quality training routes.
“As well as encouraging businesses to do more, it’s also important to improve the training provider infrastructure so learners and employers receive a quality training experience. Our work will continue into 2022 and beyond to support this.”