Mixed response to Apprenticeship increases

The number of people starting Apprenticeships has more than doubled over the past year, new figures have revealed.

Provisional data shows there were 442,700 apprenticeship starts between August 2010 and July 2011, compared to 279,700 in 2009 to 2010.

The findings have been hailed by Business Secretary Vince Cable but greeted with scepticism by some who say the growth in Apprenticeships is not in the right age groups or in the necessary sectors.

Further and Higher Education policy officer for the University and College Union (UCU), John Offord, claimed the statistics were misleading.

“This is not something to be breaking out the champagne for,” warned Offord.

He said many of schemes offered to young people were not Apprenticeships in the traditional sense with some lasting only 12 weeks.

“I would question whether this is anything more than a little bit of government re-categorising to shift people out of the not in education, employment or training (NEET) category and into these so-called apprenticeships,” he added.

The news comes as the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) estimates that education spending will fall by over 13% between 2010-11 and 2014-15 including a £200m cut to the budget of career services. Offord said that many of the people taking up these new Apprenticeships could have instead benefited from terminated policies like Educational Maintenance Allowance (EMA).

Critics have warned the growth is not in the necessary age groups as the biggest rise was in the over-25s. The data from Statistical First Release (SFR) show there were 175,500 Apprenticeship starts by those aged 25 and over, a 257% rise on the 49,100 starts the previous year.

Meanwhile, the under-19 age group saw a smaller 10% increase from 116,800 in 2009-10 to 128,300 in 2010-11. There was a 22% rise in those aged 19 to 24 starting Apprenticeships, up to 138,900 from 113,800 over the same time period.

Welcoming the Apprenticeship growth, the Business Secretary said: “This Government’s unprecedented investment in Apprenticeships is working for businesses and creating long term career opportunities for record numbers of trainees.”

The National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) also welcomed the findings, with a spokesperson saying: “This is not only great news for young people, but also for employers and the economy.”

However, some sectors are concerned by the relatively modest uptake of Apprenticeships in key growth areas when compared with those in retail and business.

Business, Administration and Law Apprenticeships rose by 70% and Retail and Commercial Enterprise increased by 63%, whereas Construction, Planning and the Built Environment rose by 5% and Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies by 24%.

Stephanie Fernandes, of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), said: “If the government is serious about rebalancing the economy towards manufacturing then focus needs to be provided to ensure apprenticeship funding is targeted on this sector. A 24% increase in engineering and manufacturing apprenticeships against a backdrop of a 50% increase across all sectors, should be cause for concern.”

The Department for Business Innovation and Skills said funding for Apprenticeships has been increased in 2011-12 to over £1.4bn including a £25m fund to support up to 10,000 Advanced Level and Higher Apprenticeships.

Cable pledged to “drive up standards, cut bureaucracy for smaller firms and deliver more advanced level and high tech training.”

Lewis Dyson

Ian Barratt, the newly-appointed chief executive of the Institute of Career Guidance (ICG), discusses how the differing pattern of careers guidance provision in the UK is creating a postcode lottery.

 

Ian Barratt, the newly-appointed chief executive of the Institute of Career Guidance (ICG), discusses how the differing pattern of careers guidance provision in the UK is creating a postcode lottery that is not helping individuals or the wider economy, in the first of a monthly column.

Careers guidance provision in the UK is already a patchwork quilt and the danger is that the situation is getting worse. Recent cuts in English local authority budgets have had a massive impact on the Connexions service which has, up to now, been providing careers information advice and guidance to school pupils, college students, NEETs (young people not in education employment or training) and those with special needs. The outcome is a postcode lottery with some areas offering no careers services at all, others a depleted service focusing only on vulnerable young people and a few attempting to provide continuity of service.

The trigger for this has been the Education Bill, currently going through Parliament, which places a legal duty on schools to provide career information advice and guidance (IAG) that is impartial and independent. This means that teachers cannot, in theory, provide IAG as they are deemed to be “partial”, but will given the option to buy in careers services. Those colleges that have witnessed schools tearing up their prospectuses, banning them from participating in careers fairs and rubbishing the quality of their teaching – all aimed at cajoling pupils to stay on into the sixth form – will clap their hands with glee. But there is a catch. Schools will receive no extra budget as the £200 million spent on the Connexions service has effectively disappeared – possibly earmarked for other things. Anecdotal evidence from members of the Institute of Career Guidance indicates that few schools will be able to afford to buy in careers IAG. Those that can may go for the cheapest option, regardless of quality, unless they have healthy finances.

To satisfy requirements of the legislation for independence and impartiality, the government is setting up a website with an online telephone advice service as part of its much-heralded National Careers Service for England. So any school that wants to ensure they are following the rules has merely to refer pupils to the website. Job done. That saves £200 million without too much fuss. It also chimes with the government’s decentralisation approach to schools by leaving it up to them to decide what is best for their pupils.

Worries that young people aged 16-19 will be left with no access to face-to-face guidance services have been raised by politicians. There are moves in the House of Lords to try and extend the legal duty to provide career IAG up to the age of 18, but none of this is set in stone. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have a different structure and are not affected in the same way, demonstrating that a careers service funded centrally is feasible.

In Scotland, careers guidance remains a Government service in the form of Skills Development Scotland, aimed at individuals of all ages. It is also moving towards an online model and a recent review of post-16 education and vocational training by Willy Roe (former Chairman of Skills Development Scotland) emphasised the fact that the public sector no longer has a monopoly on the supply of career IAG and that a new generation of online services has now reached the market. Careers services in Wales are undergoing their own upheaval. While the aim is an all-age service, there are currently six companies in Wales working in partnership. They are moving towards becoming a single organisation with a corresponding loss of people and expertise. Finally, in Northern Ireland, the Government service is facing its own budgetary issues.

The Institute of Careers Guidance continues to believe in a unified profession, with a single set of competences and ethics to underpin service delivery in all these contexts. But it seems to us inevitable that upheaval, budgetary pressures and varying arrangements can only distort service at the local level. Our definition is that “Career guidance refers to services and activities intended to assist individuals of any age and at any point throughout their lives, to make educational, training and occupational choices and to manage their careers”.

Whether going into further or higher education, entering the job market for the first time or seeking a career change, it is demoralising and wasteful for individuals to be applying for or undertaking the wrong course or role. In our view, this means that individuals deserve – and the wider economy needs – sound career advice so that the right skills can be harnessed in the right roles. The Recruitment and Employment Federation summed it up this way: “Our jobs market is open, dynamic and flexible; this provides our economy with an international advantage. We must nurture this by building a highly skilled workforce and by harnessing the contribution of recruitment professionals in providing guidance for job-seekers”.

We also remain concerned that, while a new generation entering the job market is IT and web literate, technology is not the only answer. From experience we know that young people like to receive information in lots of different ways. Some people like to use the internet, email and computer programmes, while others like to talk to careers advisers on the phone and sometimes use text. However, when we talk to young people their preferred method of communication seems to be face to face discussion – talking through ideas and finding out through discussion with a careers adviser what is the best next step.
The Institute of Career Guidance will be monitoring the pattern of delivery across the UK and continuing to provide evidence to all Governments around the need for a quality careers service for all.

Ian Barratt is chief executive of the Institute of Career Guidance (ICG)

Creative Apprenticeships (CAs) are adding significant value to employers, employees and the state, according to a recent report. FE NEWS

Creative Apprenticeships (CAs) are adding significant value to employers, employees and the state, according to a recent report.

A study conducted by non-profit sector consultants Baker Tilly, and the Education & Employers Taskforce, investigated the return of investment from the CAs programme, which was introduced in 2008 and consists of vocational as well as theory-based qualifications at Level 2 or 3, and presented evidence that showed apprentices will have a significant impact on the UK economy.

The latest cohort of 210 apprentices is forecast to deliver a net gain of £2.4m to the UK economy over the coming decade, with expected net gains of some £16.4m for the next five cohorts of learners.

Surveys, conducted as part of the report, also showed that 79% of employers believe that CAs made a significant contribution to their business.

Pauline Tambling, joint chief executive of Creative & Cultural Skills, the skills council responsible for the delivery of CAs, said: “Employers are now seeing the real economic benefits of apprenticeships. Young people who have completed apprenticeships are ahead of the game when it comes to developing a wider skill set, formal workplace training and an understanding of business.”

Tambling added: “With youth unemployment and tuition fees both at a high, the future development of new apprenticeship frameworks, including at Levels 4 and above, is likely to play a significant role in the success of the creative and cultural industries in the UK.”

Apostolos Kostoulas

Interest in apprenticeships soars as universities say fees will put too many students off.

By Chris Slack and Kate Loveys

Falling fees: Students at some universities could see their tuition fee drop as part of a government incentive to lower the costFalling fees: Students at some universities could see their tuition fee drop as part of a government incentive to lower the cost

Universities joined the growing consensus against the rise in tuition fees today as figures revealed thousands are seeking alternative routes through apprenticeships.

Higher education establishments across the country are vowing to drop their fees to below £7,500 after the Government announced incentives for those that charge lower amounts.

The move comes after ministers announced that English institutions who charged £7,500 or lower would be able to bid for a share in 20,000 funded places.

The decision has seen 12 universities, all of whom were planning to charge up to £9,000, express an interest in lowering their fees.

The majority considering the move are believed to be former polytechnics, including the University of Derby and University of Hertfordshire.

Despite the move, figures released yesterday suggested that the rise in fees will result in a drop of 7.5 per cent in the university enrollment rate for males and nearly 5 per cent for female students.

Ministers, who had expected just a handful of elite institutions to charge £9,000, are desperate to drive fees down to reduce the burden of the student loan on the public purse.

The move will also help reduce the mountain of crippling debt for some graduates.

Attack: Liam Burns, president of the National Union of Students, said the revelation is yet another example of the Coalition's shambolic policiesAttack: Liam Burns, president of the National Union of Students, said the revelation is yet another example of the Coalition’s shambolic policies

However, it drew widespread criticism yesterday and accusations that the Coalition’s policy is in complete disarray.

It comes just one week before the admissions process for autumn 2012 is due to start. This means thousands will be expected to choose universities without knowing the cost.

Liam Burns, president of the National Union of Students, said the revelation is yet another example of the Coalition’s shambolic policies.

‘With students preparing to submit university applications in just a matter of weeks, the shambles of the Government’s fees arrangements has left places being auctioned off to the lowest bidder and universities looking to cut corners,’ he said.

‘As a direct result of ministers’ bungled funding policies, prospective students have been left in the dark as to what universities will charge and now face an agonising wait for clarity over their future options.

‘We need urgent action from ministers to put right shambolic policies that risk doing permanent damage to students’ prospects.’

The disarray among the university fees comes as figures revealed that interest in apprenticeship vacancies has soared rapidly since the turn of the year.

Enlarge   On the up: Searches for 'apprentice vacancies' are up by 400%, while the term 'apprenticeship' has seen an increase of 625 On the up: Searches for ‘apprentice vacancies’ are up by 400%, while the term ‘apprenticeship’ has seen an increase of 625

Rises: The National Apprenticeship Service website (blue) has seen a 50 per cent rise in visits year on year, while notgoingtouni.co.uk, has seen hits soar by 150 per centRises: The National Apprenticeship Service website (blue) has seen a 50 per cent rise in visits year on year, while notgoingtouni.co.uk, has seen hits soar by 150 per cent

Statistics released by internet analysts Hitwise showed that since January 2011, searches for ‘apprenticeship vacancies’ have soared by 425 per cent, while the term ‘apprenticeship’ is up 62 per cent.

And the National Apprenticeship Service website has seen a 50 per cent rise in visits year on year.

Another website, notgoingtouni.co.uk, has seen hits soar by 150 per cent since this time last year.

The figures also revealed that the most popular type of apprenticeships searched for were that of plumber, engineer or electrician.

And the most popular companies searched for included British Gas, NHS and British Telecom.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2035253/Universities-claim-fees-high-applications-apprenticeships-soar.html#ixzz1XP1TYbx2

David Cameron moves to water down new EU job laws

 David Cameron may overrule Vince Cable by diluting controversial new EU employment laws to be introduced next month, The Daily Telegraph can disclose.

David Cameron moves to water down new EU job laws

Senior aides to the Prime Minister are growing increasingly alarmed about the potential economic impact of the Agency Workers Directive  Photo: AFP/GETTY
Robert Winnett

By , and Christopher Hope

The Prime Minister’s office secretly commissioned its own legal advice on the Agency Workers Directive, which concluded that the impact of the new laws could be moderated.

The directive, to be introduced under EU law, will give temporary agency workers the same rights as full-time workers to pay, holiday and maternity leave after 12 weeks of employment. The laws are expected to cost British businesses almost £2 billion a year.

But Downing Street has been told by lawyers that the Business Secretary’s department has “gold-plated” the legislation with additional rules that need not have been included, despite a pledge by the Coalition not to introduce unnecessary regulation that undermines business.

Mr Cameron’s advisers are weighing up whether to strip out some of these provisions.

One option suggested is the “Armageddon” tactic of simply refusing to introduce the new laws, a move that could result in multi-million pound EU fines for the Government.

Business groups have warned that the measures will force some companies to lay off workers.

With the changes looming, Steve Hilton, Mr Cameron’s director of policy, is understood to have hired Martin Howe QC to provide confidential legal advice on the Government’s options regarding the directive.

Mr Howe is an expert in EU law who serves on the recently established Human Rights Commission to consider a British Bill of Rights.

It is extremely unusual for Downing Street to commission its own external legal advice rather than rely on Whitehall recommendations and it indicates the distrust towards Mr Cable.

The Agency Workers Directive was introduced by Labour but it was re-analysed by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills after the election, after which Liberal Democrat ministers announced it would be implemented as planned.

It is understood that Mr Howe suggested that the Government effectively had three choices if it did not wish to adopt the directive in its entirety: to water down and delay the planned laws; to seek to introduce new legislation in Parliament that could overrule the EU diktat; or to simply ignore the EU directive.

A well-placed source said: “The advice showed that there are elements of gold-plating of the EU directive that could easily be stripped out. For example, people who set up their own firms and then contract their services to other companies need not be covered. These changes could be done relatively easily through regulations.

“The more radical options which were set out would require new legislation and therefore Liberal Democrat support. It would also risk a confrontation with the trade unions.”

Another Downing Street source said that the advice had not provided the “golden bullet” that Mr Cameron had hoped for. “These are very difficult issues, both politically and legally,” the source added.

The issue of boosting economic growth is now central to policy development in Downing Street. Economic growth fell to just 0.2 per cent during the second quarter of the year and there are fears that the country may fall back into recession during the autumn.

There is growing frustration with Treasury and business department officials among some Downing Street aides.

The Conservatives are expected to use their annual conference, which starts next month, to set out a wide array of new policies to boost economic growth.

However, there are also growing concerns that the Liberal Democrats will use their conference, later this month, to propose new taxes on wealth and other measures that may deter entrepreneurs.

Next week, new proposals from an independent government-appointed commission to rein in the banks will be outlined. Mr Cameron is also seeking to delay and water down these proposals but is facing opposition from Mr Cable.

Mr Hilton, one of the Prime Minister’s most senior aides, is an increasingly controversial figure in Whitehall. He is thought to be keen to “take on” the EU on a major issue to put an end to unnecessary and costly regulation. Over the summer, it was disclosed that he had even floated the idea of scrapping maternity rights.

However, it may now be too late for a major confrontation over the Agency Workers Directive.

One source said: “The French are very clever about these things – an act of defiance is a big political decision.”

An analysis of the new employment laws by the Department for Business concluded that it would cost firms more than £1.8 billion a year. The laws will give more than one million workers the right to holidays, pay, maternity leave and other perks they do not currently receive. The typical small business will have to pay an extra £2,493 a year, increasing to £73,188 for large firms.

A Downing Street spokesman said: “We are now looking at every part of employment law as part of the red tape challenge. We want to do everything we can to help employers and drive growth.”

Social enterprise needs definition to go mainstream

The Social Enterprise Mark is a credible guarantee of motivation, says the Social Enterprise Mark Company’s managing director

Social Enterprise Mark award

Iridescent Ideas CIC receiving the Mark by Worker Co-op, Development Trust and social enterprise colleagues from the Plymouth Social Enterprise Network

The Social Enterprise Mark is the certification authority for social enterprises. The certification process does not attempt to prescribe business, organisation, or any legal structures that they may adopt, such as charities, community interest companies, limited by share or by guarantee.

The Mark was originally developed with the sector, for the sector. It took the widely recognised and accepted definition of social enterprise and conducted extensive consultation and research, which led to the development of the certification criteria. These are rigorously applied and overseen by an independent certification panel to assure credibility and consistency.

If you agree that social enterprises, with any legal structure from CLG, CIC to charities, can develop along a spectrum from start-up, emerging, to established and mature, there will always be a debate around which point on the spectrum any criteria or assessment can be applied. This will inevitably lead to extensive debate around definitions and application of any criteria.

As Malcolm Sutton, a Mark-certified Tender Management Community Services CIC, explains “I would argue that all social enterprises have an element of ‘charity’ in them – how different is the ‘social purpose’ from the ‘charitable objective’? And equally that the majority of charities have to have an element of ‘business’ to what they do.”

The criteria are not set in stone and continue to respond to the needs of social enterprises. We are independent of any public funding and just 18 months old, but with rigorous assessment process, the number of Mark holders is progressing steadily.

Social enterprises are looking for accreditation to prove they operate as genuine social enterprises, and we give them the tools to differentiate themselves. In the light of the increasing demand for shareholder transparency, the Mark provides the only credible indicator that shareholder profit is not the motivation for operation.

Internationally, negotiations are being held with many countries, including Finland and South Africa, where the Mark is of great interest as an aspirational goal for the social enterprise movement.

Social purpose contributions or corporate social responsibility are good in their own way, but do not address the core principle that social enterprises exist to benefit people and planet. If there is any question on why social enterprises should differentiate themselves from private enterprise, read ‘Academic publishers make Murdoch look like a socialist’. With corporations able to generate private profit margins of up to 36% from work that has been publicly funded, there has never been a better time for social enterprises to demonstrate their better way of doing business.

What Mark holders have to say

Daniel RousFurniture Plus

“Yet again, we find ourselves in a discussion over labelling. As long as (in no particular order) OSCR, Companies House, Inland Revenue and the general public are happy with what is being done then let’s just get on with reaping social benefit for as many as possible.”

Chris Bailey, Westway Development Trust

“What matters in social enterprise is that we do not have people setting up things and calling them social enterprises when they are not, or when those organisations work in a way which is at odds with what the general public expects of a social enterprise.”

Lucy Findlay is Managing Director of the Social Enterprise Mark Company, which aims to increase mainstream understanding of social enterprises as a better way of doing business in the UK and beyond.

Gateshead College Launches Low Carbon Vehicle Academy

Gateshead College Launches Low Carbon Vehicle Academy Gateshead track

The number of electric and hybrid cars on UK roads is rapidly growing and sometime in near future it’ll overtake fossil fuel cars. Obviously, There is a need for experts to help people easing the transition.

That’s what Gateshead College of North East England has been thinking. So they came up with a dedicated academy for low carbon vehicle industry. They have also opened North of England’s first public access Performance Track as part of the project.

Gateshead College’s Skills Academy for Sustainable Manufacturing and Innovation (SASMI) is the UK’s first education centre dedicated to the clean technologies sector. Housed in a state-of-the-art new £9.8 million building in Washington, Tyne & Wear, SASMI will deliver a wide range of low carbon vehicles skills training, with a focus on the automotive industry.

Green cars, electric vehicles in particular, bring with them a whole new lifestyle and new driving habits. For instance, you can’t just tow an electric car if the battery died, as it’ll damage the internal systems. There are many new things to learn about them, and that’s why the idea of a dedicated academy is not outlandish. Current courses include training for first responders, helping the emergency services and roadside rescue operators to safely deal with high voltagehybrid and electric vehicles. This will be followed by innovative courses dedicated to the production of EVs.

Mick Brophy, Managing Director of Business, Innovation & Development at Gateshead College, said: “North East England is at the heart of the UK’s emerging low carbon vehicle sector, making it the ideal home for the country’s first sustainable skills academy.

“If Britain is to continue to lead the world in the development and adoption of cleaner vehicles, we must also lead in training the people who will design, build and service them.  The Academy will support the growth of a new automotive industry, delivering the skill sets needed for these vital green-collar jobs.”

Along with Nissan and the region’s leading supply chain, the two new facilities form the hub of the Government’s £200m Low Carbon Enterprise Zone, which is expected to create 7,000 new  jobs in the region over the next decade.

Government cuts apprenticeship red tape

Boost for employers as Government outlines new measures on cutting red tape deterring employers from taking on apprentices.

 Scissors cutting red tape

Skills Minister John Hayes has announced a package of new measures to make it easier for employers to take on large numbers of apprentices.

Payments will be simplified, contracts streamlined and a number of data returns and audit requirements will be eliminated.

Mr Hayes said that firms that contract directly with the Government to train apprentices will now benefit from simplified payment, reporting and assessment requirements.

They will also receive better guidance to help them manage the recruitment, training and assessment of apprentices more efficiently and cost effectively.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said:

“Apprenticeships are proving an increasingly effective training route for young people and companies. They are a proven way to fill skills gaps in our economy. That’s why we are boosting the number of apprenticeships and putting them at the heart of our Skills for Growth strategy.

“But for far too long too many businesses have been put off by overly complex procedures and unnecessary layers of paperwork. We’ve worked with business to cut bureaucracy and ensure the benefits for employers, learners and the economy are maximised”.

Action plan for cutting red tape

Announcing the measures at a summit hosted by the CBI today, Mr Hayes said:

“I’m determined that more employers and learners than ever should have the opportunity to benefit from our unprecedented investment in apprenticeships. Where red tape and bureaucracy deters employers from taking on apprentices, we’ll sweep it away.

“That will give more firms access to the skills they need to thrive, creating new jobs and new growth, and it will give many more individuals better prospects and the chance to gain a real stake in society.”

Measures for cutting red tape for employers include:

  • A pilot for over 20 large employers who have volunteered to trial “payment by outcomes” which will eliminate a number of data returns and audit requirements.
  • Providing an online plain-English toolkit for employers that clearly explains the end-to-end processes employers need to undertake for apprenticeships.
  • Streamlining contracting arrangements.
  • A commitment to no “in year” changes to contracting arrangements.
  • A more proportionate approach to audit and inspection – reducing preparation time for employers.
  • Greater use of electronic information, thus reducing paperwork.
  • A more streamlined certification process.

These measures follow the recommendations of a review led by the Employer Reference Group, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and large companies, including BT and TUI Travel.

Susan Anderson, the CBI’s director for education and skills policy, said: “Cutting bureaucracy will support even more businesses to become involved and these recommendations set out the right path for reform.

“They recognise that employers are primarily concerned with the day-to-day running of their businesses, and that they are committed to offering high quality training as their reputation and business success depends on this.”

Employers urged to work with unions to increase Apprenticeships among BME communities

Employers are being urged to work with trade unions to increase black and minority ethnic (BME) communities’ participation rates in Apprenticeships by unionlearn, the TUC’s learning and skills organisation.

According to estimates by the National Apprenticeship Service, only eight per cent of Apprenticeships are currently taken up by members of BME groups.

“Unionlearn is calling on employers to reconsider their recruitment strategies to ensure that the apprentices they employ reflect the diversity of the area where the workplace is based,” said unionlearn director Tom Wilson.

“Employers should make a special effort to offer work experience and open days to young BME people.”

Linda Clarke, professor of European industrial relations at Westminster Business School, who has researched obstacles for ethnic minorities in accessing vocational training in the construction industry, said: “The reality is that many employers still want to work with people like themselves. So if they are white and male, the chances are they’ll look to recruit similar types.”

There were 279,700 Apprenticeship starts in the 2009/10 academic year, and Skills Minister John Hayes has announced aspirations to surpass an all-time record of 400,000 apprentices. However, only 30 per cent of companies of 500+ currently take on apprentices.

Versa Professional Services plans to join unionlearn in hosting an event to raise awareness to increase the numbers of young people from BME groups who take up Apprenticeship training.

Simon Tepper, Versa’s director of diversity in Apprenticeships, said: “We know that by ensuring that all young people are able to make an economic contribution to our society that we will grow stronger as a society.

“Apprenticeships are becoming ever more popular with young people who see the clear advantages of receiving a wage whilst training. Many apprentices value the adult atmosphere of work and are encouraged to take higher levels of training throughout their career. The conference will give the opportunity to hear directly from apprentices and employers.”

Mark Thompson

500 apprentices wanted for hotel management programme

Travelodge

The company is looking for its first 50 apprentices this summer for the new scheme titled JuMP (Junior Management Programme).

JuMP is a fast track route into management and offers A -level students (18+) with an alternative to going to university. On this programme college leavers can continue their education, obtain work experience, receive a salary and become a manager by the age of 21.

Travelodge have launched the scheme on response to Chancellor George Osborne’s appeal for British companies to generate more high value apprenticeship placements to help the one million young people currently out of work in the UK to gain jobs.

Guy Parsons, Travelodge CEO commented: “Our nationwide JuMP programme offers school leavers an alternative career choice, to going to university. The fast track management programme provides a real job, with the opportunity of on the job training throughout the business, combined with further education and the opportunity to earn up to £30,000. In contrast to going to university and graduating with a debt of £43,224* and facing an overcrowded jobs market.

Skills Minister John Hayes said: “Apprenticeships are a great way for young people to get the training they need to build successful careers, and for businesses to train a new generation of employees with the skills that drive growth.  I applaud Travelodge for its commitment to apprenticeships; and with additional funding of £180m in this budget alone, this government is enabling more employers to follow its lead”.

In support of its JuMP scheme, Travelodge surveyed British youngsters aged 16 to 18 years old, to gain their views on going to university and apprenticeships. The key findings are listed below:

  • (71%) of respondents are questioning the value of going to university due to the rising costs and the apparent lack of graduate jobs in the current market.
  • (53%) of school leavers think it’s vital to have a degree to become a manager in a major UK company.
  • (51%) of 16 – 18 year olds would not associate an apprenticeship scheme with a management job and 53% think it would not be possible to become a manager at the age of 21 without going to university.
  • (53%) of 16 – 18 year olds stated they are worried about their future due to Government cut backs.
  • (68%) of respondents stated working in the UK tourism industry is not an aspirational job
  • Only 20% of 16 – 18 year olds thought the UK tourism industry is one of the country’s top performing industries.

Respondents predicted if they went to university, the average debt they would have upon graduation is £21,884; which is well below the predicted figure of £43,224 by the Government.

Guy Parsons, Travelodge CEO said: “In response to our survey findings, it’s right that today’s youth should be concerned about their future. In today’s economic climate, going to university does not guarantee a job upon graduation. It’s also very concerning that school leavers don’t really know the cost of going to university and think its £22,000 when the reality is more than double this figure as stated by the Government.  Also there is a lot of naivety around apprenticeship schemes and the UK tourism industry. Therefore, I am hopeful that our JuMP initiative will help dismiss these outdated, snobbish views and that today’s youth will see the potential of becoming a leader; in a powerhouse industry of the future.”

On the Travelodge JuMP scheme, apprentices will experience practical, vocational learning in hotel management, retail, operations, marketing and customer service. Apprentices will attain a L2 Apprenticeship in Multi Skilled Hospitality and a L3 Diploma (Advanced Apprenticeship) in hospitality Supervision & Leadership. Upon completing the apprenticeship programme apprentices will undertake the Travelodge in house 12 week management programme and then graduate to a management role.
A JuMP apprentice is expected to earn in total between £25,000 to £30,000 from training to graduation.