Tees Valley employers working in key sectors are being encouraged to recruit for an apprentice through a new grant scheme which aims to further establish the area as an innovative region for apprenticeship growth.
Apprenticeship Support for Employers (ASE) is provided by Tees Valley Combined Authority and offers excellent opportunities for employers in key sectors such as advanced manufacturing, chemical and process, and digital and creative, to grow and develop their workforce. It is designed to assist employers committed to creating a new apprenticeship or progressing an existing apprentice onto a higher level.
Several companies have already taken advantage of the support, welcoming new apprentices to their teams over the past couple of months.
Working closely with training providers, they will provide a valuable experience for their apprentices who will become the future generation of skilled workers in Tees Valley.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “Now more than ever we need more of the skills that local businesses are crying out for. We are committed to increasing routes to great careers but we recognise employers need support. We are launching this funding scheme to address shortage by specifically targeting the sectors of our economy which have the highest growth potential.
“Tees Valley has a strong track record of encouraging apprenticeships, with recent growth far higher than national rates. I want to build on this success, and urge businesses to come forward and work with us so that we can invest in developing home-grown talent.”
The £1.3million scheme has been created following the previously successful Apprenticeship Grant for Employers (AGE), devolved to the Combined Authority in 2016, which approved applications to support more than 1,000 apprentices.
It is hoped the new scheme will have an even greater impact by specifically focussing on growing skills and employment in key sectors that have been highlighted in Tees Valley’s Strategic Economic Plan.
These key sectors have been identified as; advanced manufacturing, process, chemicals and energy, logistics, health and biologics, digital and creative, culture and leisure and business and professional services.
Tees Valley employers in these sectors can apply for one of two grants.
A grant of £2,500 per apprentice for small to medium businesses (under 250 employees) from priority sectors who employ an apprentice aged 19+.
An initial grant of £500 per apprentice for small businesses (under 50 employees) who employ and apprentice aged 19-24 with an additional £500 if the apprentice is still employed after 13 months.