High-skill and high-tech construction apprenticeships are needed to boost the skills needed in infrastructure projects to drive the UK’s economic recovery, according to new research released by ACE’s apprenticeship group, the Technical Apprenticeship Consortium (TAC), University College of Estate Management (UCEM) and the Construction Industry Council (CIC).
The report, Build back better: Improving the apprenticeship system to better support infrastructure, recommends the Government works with the authors, employers and professional bodies to:
- Recognise the value of technical and higher-level apprenticeships leading to professional registration;
- Increase the flexibility of the apprenticeship levy;
- Join up and improve the apprenticeship systems across the UK; and
- Celebrate and promote apprenticeships.
Aled Williams, who co-authored the report and is CIC Champion on Higher Education and UCEM’s Director of Research, Innovation and Partnerships, said: “The construction industry is integral to the UK’s financial health and can provide the catalyst for an economic recovery accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Apprenticeships are hugely important for employers to train workforces with the appropriate skill set to achieve the ambitious infrastructure projects projected across the nation, however, both businesses and education providers need to have more input in how these are run. The research shows that there is a desire throughout the construction industry to get apprenticeships right and, if Government listens and acts upon the recommendations outlined, there could be huge benefits for the UK.”
Caroline Sudworth of TAC is also a co-author of the report. Gareth Drought, recently appointed chair of TAC, commented: “This research has confirmed what we have known for a while at TAC, that many employers in our industry are fully committed to apprenticeships. However, if we are to see a true employer-led system emerge, now is the time for Government to reflect on the recommendations in this report and build on our successes to date.
“We need to also ensure that what is currently in place works for employers and their apprentice workforce, drives forward high-quality education, which is fully supported by the apprenticeship levy, with direct links to professional registration.
“Only then will we be able to see the emergence of a pipeline of highly-skilled workers that delivers Government’s long-term ambitions to build back better.”
Find out more about TAC and how it can help you with your apprenticeship needs. Download the report below.