One in five tradespeople consider apprentices more important than ever
Posted on 06 Mar 2021 and read 636 times
Image courtesy of IronmongeryDirect
Some 31% of companies and tradespeople that regularly hire apprentices feel that apprenticeship programmes have been made harder due to the pandemic. Indeed, new ONS figures show a 30% drop in new construction apprentices between August and October 2020, compared to the same period in 2019.
Further highlighting the effect of Covid-19, some 22% of companies that usually hire apprentices took on fewer in 2020, despite 19% of tradespeople believing that apprenticeship programmes are more important now than ever.
Commissioned by IronmongeryDirect
, the UK’s largest supplier of specialist ironmongery, the study also reveals that one in 12 tradespeople believe that the Government has not done enough to support apprentices throughout the pandemic. Looking at the year ahead, the positive news is that 23% of businesses and tradespeople plan to ‘bring on’ apprentices in 2021.
Meanwhile, according to the Office of National Statistics, the number of female apprentices in construction is also on the rise, increasing by 19% in the 2019/20 academic year compared to the previous 12 months. This represents significant growth as there are now 333% more female construction trainees than in 2014/2015.
So far in the 2020/2021 academic year, the percentage of female new starters has increased a further 9%, suggesting that this growth is set to continue.
Marco Verdonkschot, IronmongeryDirect’s managing director, said: “It is great to see that many tradespeople and companies are still looking to make use of apprenticeship programmes, despite the difficulty of the past year. We think apprenticeship schemes are the way to help shape the next generation of tradespeople. That is why we have launched a competition for a UK based tradesperson or company to win £5,000 towards funding an apprentice.”
Details of this competition and related research can be found at the website (www.ironmongerydirect.co.uk/blog/apprenticeships-and-covid-19-looking-ahead-to-2021