A new recruitment service known as the Technical Apprenticeship Service has been launched by sector skills council, Cogent, which plans to attract, select and place technical apprentices.
The Technical Apprenticeship Service (TAS) is aimed at companies involved in process manufacturing industries including: chemicals, life sciences, pharmaceuticals, and polymers.
Employers, education and qualification providers and apprentices will be able to utilise the service, which has initially been funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) Growth and Innovation Fund. In the long term it is intended to be self-sustaining.
Jayne Edwards, newly appointed managing director of TAS said: “The wide support for TAS demonstrates the importance of science-based apprenticeships to the economy; we look forward to supporting employers, particularly SMEs, in finding the right calibre of people for their business.”
TAS was launched officially on October 13 by Cogent chairman Tom Crotly at Cogent SSC’s Annual Skills Forum at the House of Commons.
Joanna Woolf, Cogent’s CEO, said: “Our event at the House of Commons was a real celebration of the specialist apprentices across the science-using footprint. The launch of TAS will support companies to boost their skills base, increase capacity to meet future demand and is a cost-effective way to address skills gaps.”
The main aim of the newly-formed service is to increase apprenticeship numbers in the process sector by creating new provision in areas which have previously lacked specialist technical training.
It will also encourage apprentices to progress to higher levels of learning and promote the new Higher Level Apprenticeships, particularly in life sciences. As University fees continue to increase, this offers a debt-free route to degree-level employment while gaining workplace skills.
Phil Jones, CEO of the National Skills Academy Process Industries added: “The Skills Academy will support the delivery of TAS – and we’ve already identified a strong appetite from employers who are seeking talented, motivated individuals, who are equipped with the specialist, high value, skills these industries need to succeed.”