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12/06/18 09:49

Modern Apprenticeship target surpassed

More than 27,000 new apprenticeships across Scotland in past year.

The Scottish Government target for apprenticeships has been exceeded, with 27,145 people starting Modern Apprenticeshipsin 2017/2018, surpassing last year’s target of 27,000.

The latest annual statistics from Skills Development Scotland (SDS) show that the Scottish Government’s commitment to increase apprenticeship starts to 30,000 by 2020 is on course to be met.  This year’s target of 28,000 starts as the next step to that includes graduate apprenticeships as part of the formal target for Modern Apprenticeships, with there being around 900 graduate opportunities, up from 278 starts last year.

Announcing the figures during a visit to Edinburgh-based digital technology business and apprentice employer, Cortex Worldwide Ltd, Employability and Training Minister Jamie Hepburn said:

“Apprenticeships are a fantastic way for all employers to invest in their workforce and provide the skills the economy needs now and in the future. I welcome these statistics which show that once again we are exceeding our annual Modern Apprenticeship target.

“We are funding more apprenticeships in Scotland than ever before, and with a record 27,145 new Modern Apprenticeship starts last year, we are on track to achieve our ambition to deliver 30,000 new apprenticeship starts by 2020.

“We are continuing to enhance the apprenticeship opportunities available to provide the right balance of skills to meet the needs of employers and the economy, including prioritising higher skilled apprenticeships and STEM occupations.”

During his visit Mr Hepburn met with the Cortex apprentices, who work across Software Development, Cyber Security and IT Management for Business. Having taken on its first Modern Apprentices is 2016, Cortex now employs five apprentices and is due to take on another three this year.

CEO of Cortex Worldwide, Peter Proud, said:

“Taking on Modern Apprentices and offering employees the opportunity to develop their skills through Graduate Apprenticeships has been hugely beneficial for the business.

“It brings diversity and fresh thinking into Cortex and ensures the tech industry has the pipeline of talent with the training needed to meet skills for the future.

“Any business owner should look hard at apprenticeships and the solid business reasons to invest in young talent.  Find a Graduate Apprenticeship university to partner with and start investing in their future.”

SDS Head of National Training Programmes, Fiona Stewart, said:

“Employers and industry continue to invest in apprenticeships because they recognise the benefits of developing a skilled workforce.

“The world of work is constantly changing and businesses increasingly see apprenticeships as the way to meet their current and future skills needs.

“For individuals and employers, there has never been a better time to get involved in work-based learning.”