Building Engineering Services Training (BEST) has been selected as one of only two national M&E training providers to share in £11m of Government funding to create new apprenticeship places. Announced on 14 May by Skills Secretary John Denham and Schools Secretary Ed Balls, the funding forms part of a new approach to help employers train skilled workers of the future.
Under the Apprenticeship Expansion Programme (AEP), BEST is able to provide additional funding to support those employers that might otherwise face affordability constraints, through the first year of an apprentice placement.
The scheme will result in a further 200 apprenticeships delivered through BEST, specifically benefiting smaller companies in the supply chain.
Funding has been allocated to those businesses that already have a track record of offering high quality apprenticeships, meeting the Governments stringent criteria to ensure the additional apprenticeship places created are of an excellent standard. BEST are one of 16 successful organisations, alongside household names such as Ford Motor Company, BMW, Unilever and Jaguar Land Rover.
Dr Mark Brenner, CEO for BEST said: “This is a fantastic endorsement and recognition of the opportunities within our sector and its importance to the growing skills landscape. We are receiving a very positive response to this scheme from employers and I would urge all employers to seriously consider the benefits of taking on an apprentice.
“The use of apprenticeships as part of a developing workforce has been shown to create overall labour savings of 10-15% on a typical M&E contract whilst providing the skills for future growth and in preparation for the upturn in the current economy.
“Under the ‘Skills Pay’ campaign BEST are able to demonstrate real commercial returns on even short term investment in training within the M&E sector. This additional funding makes the argument even more compelling.
The move will help deliver on the Government’s recent commitment to fund an extra 35,000 apprenticeship places across the public and private sectors, backed by an additional £140 million of funding.”