A new study has revealed the need for changes within the apprenticeship system!

According to the research, hundreds of thousands of new workers will need to enter the construction industry in the next five years. This is in order to combat the current shortage that threatens the possibility of meeting the demand for infrastructure and housing.

The study was conducted for the Construction Industry Federation by the Dublin Institute of Technology. They found that almost nine out of ten building companies are facing workforce issues. Specifically, they are struggling to hire new, qualified tradespeople.

Therefore, the report is urging that the government to do something about this. They are asking that steps are put in place to alter the current apprenticeship programmes. The study recommended the introduction of “zero rating”, pay-related, social insurance contributions for employers. This would be for any employer hiring an apprentice in the trades where there are severe shortages.

Specifically, the most hard hit sectors are those classed as the “wet trades”.

Alongside this, they are also asking that grants are offered for apprenticeships too. At least until the skills shortage has been resolved anyway.

The quality of apprenticeship programmes has also been discussed.  It has been asked that the amount of time apprentice’s spend gaining on site training should also be reviewed. In fact, it was found that 90% of construction courses are “dead end training”. This is due to training being classroom based, and not practical. Take a look at the full report on this here.

Alongside this, it was also stated that more active marketing also needs to be done across the industry to encourage young people to the sector. Not only that, but apprenticeships are beneficial for both students and employers. Specifically, research has found that homeowners are more likely to hire a builder if they have an apprentice.

So, it’s a win win situation. Young people get to learn a trade, and begin their careers. And employers also get to reap the benefits too. Take a look at the statistics behind this here.

But, what do you think? Does there need to be changes to the apprenticeship system? Is more on site training needed? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Source: www.irishtimes.com

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