A new service to support SMES to recruit new apprentices has been launched.
Apprenticeships New Anglia, which has been awarded a £1m grant in the latest round of European Social Funding in Norfolk and Suffolk, will support smaller employers from recruitment to completion of apprenticeships.
A new web portal www.apprenticeshipsnewanglia.co.uk is now available so that all employers can go online, request or share funding and plan their current and future apprenticeship requirements.
To support this, the project is currently recruiting eight apprentice business mentors who will work with employers across the two counties to help them to register, plan and recruit in a way that best suits them.
The project will also recruit another eight apprentice mentors who will work across schools, colleges and sixth forms in Norfolk and Suffolk to identify those young people seeking to become an apprentice when they leave education.
The project is run by Norfolk-based Moore Networking.
Sally Moore, Director of Moore Networking, said: “As we understand the value and importance of quality apprenticeships, we decided to do something positive locally to improve this. We are of course delighted that the European Social Fund has seen fit to award us this grant.”
Chris Starkie, Chief Executive of New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “It is great to see this level of dedicated support for SMEs wanting to take on apprentices.
“Our Youth Pledge – to ensure all 16 to 24-year-olds have support to access work, training or an apprenticeship – is essential to make sure young people have the opportunities they deserve and that businesses have the skilled staff they need. Projects like Apprenticeships New Anglia play an important role in helping us deliver our pledge to our region’s young people.”