As part of this year’s Budget, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced a £126 million boost for traineeships in England. Let’s take a look to see how this could impact training and development in construction.
What are traineeships?
Traineeships are all about preparation for the world of work. They are short courses which usually last for less than 6 months, and consist of a combination of learning and work experience. As work experience is highly valued within the construction industry, traineeships offer an ideal route towards an apprenticeship or your first job in construction.
To be suitable for a traineeship, you must:
- Be eligible to work in the UK
- Be aged 16 – 24 (16 – 18 in Wales)
- Be unemployed and have little to no work experience
- Have no qualifications above GCSEs (or equivalent).
You can find out more about traineeships here.
What’s been announced?
The £126 million boost will be used to fund new 40,000 traineeships across England during 2021/22, and many of these will be in construction. Unemployment is at its highest level in 5 years, and young people have experienced the sharpest decrease in employment since the Covid-19 pandemic hit, so the increased investment in traineeships could pave the way for more young people to enter the construction industry.
There’s a boost for employers too – £22 million has been set aside to continue the £1,000 incentive for each person employers take on under the traineeship scheme. This helps fund the on-the-job learning they provide, while young people gain valuable experience and skills under the scheme, putting their first step on the ladder towards a career in construction. It’s a win-win for employers and trainees alike.
Apprenticeships receive a boost too
For many who complete a placement under the traineeship scheme, an apprenticeship is the natural next step. Apprenticeships allow you to build up your knowledge and skillset, with your time typically split between a learning provider and an employer. As part of the revamped traineeships scheme, the government have announced new flexi-job apprenticeships. These will enable apprentices to work with a number of different employers during their apprenticeship, giving them the opportunity to experience different sections of the construction industry. These are expected to begin in January 2022.
What does this mean for me?
Traineeships are a relatively new learning route towards building a construction career, but they are highly valued by employers, and this new large investment from the government indicates more companies will start offering them. So, if you are 24 or under and have little or no experience of the workplace, a traineeship in construction is the perfect way to gain experience, improve your skills and build networks. Everyone has to take their first step, and this could be yours.