Manufacturers’ organisation Make UK called on engineering and manufacturing employers not to halt recruitment plans.
The association says it has 2,000 young people in its talent pool looking for apprenticeship opportunities but acknowledged that many firms may be thinking about delaying or cancelling their training programs in light of the current COVID-19 crisis.
However Stephen Mitchell, director of apprentices and technical training at Make UK’s Aston, Birmingham Technology Hub advised companies should take a strategic and long-term view, and resist the urge to delay taking on new apprentices.
“We completely understand that these are testing times for all employers, but apprentices are resilient and full of drive, they help to provide fresh ideas and are vital for business growth. During this time of unprecedented change, you still need to look at the future of your business, and apprentices play a key part in this,” he stated.
“Even if employers are not in a position to take on apprentices immediately, we would encourage them to start the conversations now. We are constantly holding telephone interviews, and our streamlined recruitment process means employers can access applications and candidates with minimal fuss and delay.”
Make UK’s Apprentice Technology Centre in Aston is one of the UK’s leading facilities delivering high specification training to around 1,450 apprentices across the UK.
Make UK recently registered a daily record figure for students using its online teaching resources, with over three quarters of its apprentice population able to continue their studies online in the first week of virtual teaching and assessments.