Pinewood Property Estates Ltd and Chesterfield College are urging Derbyshire businesses to make the most of the government’s apprenticeship bonus scheme. The scheme offers employers up to £4,000 for every apprentice recruited. It is designed to help businesses grow their team and also provide opportunities for people to develop the skills they need to boost their careers.
Stacey Davies-Bowler, managing director at Pinewood Property Estates Ltd in Chesterfield, is a great advocate for apprenticeships. He is keen to highlight what benefits they bring, particularly with the availability of the apprenticeship incentive payment.
Stacey started his career as an apprentice and has helped many others to do the same. As part of recent expansion plans, the business was keen to recruit a new apprentice along with other senior members of staff. They worked with Chesterfield College to explore the options open to them to find the perfect apprentice candidate. The apprenticeship bonus scheme was an added benefit for the organisation when they recruited Alberta, a Customer Service apprentice.
Stacey is keen to share his experiences as an employer of apprentices. He hopes to encourage other small businesses to make the most of what the incentive scheme offers. He told us:
“Without young people coming through, any industry gets stagnant. If companies are not giving young people a chance and supporting them to learn, they are going to find a huge void in their workforce. We have had great success with apprentices over the years. It is good to see young people develop in the organisation.
“In our business, an apprentice is not cheap labour. We have to invest a lot of time and effort into developing apprentices but we know we get a payback in the long term. We get someone who understands our business and our industry. They then go on to contribute to making a profit.
“The incentive scheme gives businesses who might be new to the apprenticeship process a good opportunity to try it out. For example, the bonus payment could potentially cover a third of an apprentice’s annual salary. For a small business, this could offer a perfect way to give a young person a start to their career and develop an apprentice to become a valued member of their team.”
Leah Shortt, Apprentice Recruitment Manager at Chesterfield College said:
“We have been supporting local business like Pinewood Property Estates to grow their team through apprenticeships for many years. Now the new incentive scheme is available, we hope it will encourage more employers to explore how apprentices could benefit them. We are here to help employers navigate their way through the apprenticeship landscape and access the incentive payments before the deadline. Our team of apprenticeship experts is on hand to help employers find the right apprenticeship programme, and the right candidate. Ultimately, this will support them to develop their future workforce and fill those critical skills gaps now and in the future.”