It is National Apprentice Week (8 to 14 February 2021). This week provides an opportunity for organisations to showcase the contribution they are making to the future finishes and interiors workforce and society. The Week can provide a platform to come together and celebrate apprenticeship journeys and successes as well as to say ‘Thank You’ to everyone who makes them possible.

All week, young people in England and Wales have been learning how they can pursue a rewarding career in construction this National Apprenticeship Week (NAW), with events and conversations that took place across the country.  With approximately 2200 new workers needed in the finishes and interiors sector each year up to 2025, and the CITB Migration Report showing that 16% of companies across construction will look to provide more apprenticeships in response to the challenges of Covid-19 and Brexit, it’s a great time to be talking about apprentices and engage young people in the process.

What can you do?

Taking on an apprentice or utilising the new Construction Traineeship initiative is a fantastic opportunity for any business, although FIS do appreciate that many of you face challenging times.  FIS are asking you to post details of apprenticeship opportunities, on the FIS JobSpot and let us know about work placement opportunities.  The FIS website has a range of tips and advice on how you can look at taking on apprentices, take a look at the FIS Apprentice – Guidance for Employers you’ll find it at the bottom of the page at Apprenticeships.  Young people looking to learn about becoming an apprentice can get some great information from the CITB Go Construct.  Scottish Apprenticeship Week will be taking place from Monday 1 to Friday 5 March 2021.

As the Government looks to construction to be a trailblazer in leading Britain’s economic recovery, there are great opportunities and incentives for employers to start getting new talent into finishes and interiors businesses.  Up to £2,000 is on offer for each new apprentice an employer hires by 31 March this year, with 19,000 applications for this fund received already.  In addition to this there is also a further £1000 of funding available for apprentices under 25 who have an education, health and care plan or have been in the care of their local authority.  There’s also currently a £1,000 boost to help companies taking on new trainees and further support via CITB funding and grants for organisations in scope.  FIS are a KickStart Gateway organisation and can help members take advantage of this scheme which may encourage you to take on an apprentice.

  • Post your apprenticeship opportunities on the National Apprenticeship Service websites England by clicking here, and on Welsh Government Apprenticeship Vacancy Service by clicking here; and on the FIS JobSpot
  • Reposting content from Go Construct and on your own social channels, using the tags, and;
  • Sharing your apprentice stories with FIS so we can encourage other members
  • Tag your on social media so everyone can see and share your posts.

This is an opportunity for the finishes and interiors organisations to talk openly with young people and those looking for a career change about the opportunities they have to pursue a rewarding career in the sector, while also attracting new talent where people may be looking for a career change. There is a commitment to get more learners from further education into jobs and apprenticeships, while also increasing the number of apprentices completing their training contact your local college to see if they can help.

Still time to get involved

“Build the Future” is the theme for NAW2021 and the core focus is to encourage everyone to consider how apprenticeships help individuals to build the skills and knowledge required for a rewarding career.  Key to this is positive stories, if you are thinking about taking on an apprentice in the finishes and interiors sector, have an apprenticeship success story (either yourself or someone you supported with an apprenticeship that has flourished in your business) please contact the FIS Team.

For the very first time, National Apprentice Week is entirely based in a digital world. From virtual career fairs through to factory tours. There will be personal stories from apprentices and employers about their own journeys and experiences and why apprenticeships help to #BuildTheFuture.

Individuals, employers, training providers and communities are being encouraged to get involved, to celebrate apprenticeships and how they:

  • TRAIN apprentices, and future proof their workforce and careers though apprenticeships;
  • RETAIN apprentices, gaining the skills and knowledge needed by the business, and seeing apprentices thrive, whilst having impact;
  • ACHIEVE a real return on investment from apprentices; realising the business benefits of apprenticeships, with apprentices progressing in their chosen careers.

toolkit is available now to support the apprenticeship community with planning their activity for National Apprenticeship Week 2021.

You can also join in the conversation with the #AskAnApprentice or #AskAnEmployer sessions to help employers, potential apprentices, teachers and parents understand the real benefits of apprenticeships.

For updates on National Apprenticeship Week and the campaign follow National Apprenticeship Service on our social media channels:

Twitter: @Apprenticeships Twitter: @FireItUp_Apps Instagram: @fireitupapps Facebook: FireItUpApps LinkedIn: National Apprenticeship Service

The Week Hashtags: #NAW2021 #BuildTheFuture

Thinking about taking on an Apprentice

FIS has a raft of information on Apprenticeships, including our Guidance for Employers.   If you have plans for National Apprentice Week or have a story that you want to share/tell, please get in touch so we can share via SpecFinish and our Social Channels.

Alternatively give us a call on 0121 707 0077 or email – we will be happy to help.

Positive stories from the Finishes and Interiors Sector