Businesses are crying out for more digital apprentices

Over 130,000 technology specialists are needed by UK businesses every single year to keep up with demand, with digital apprenticeships trying to improve Britain’s financial health, claims The Tech Partnership.

The Tech Partnership is an association of employers that have come together to help create more opportunities for those hoping to work in the digital sector.

In collaboration with the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and Experian, the partnership has found data that hopes to encourage businesses to hire more digital apprentices.

According to research, the UK needs approximately 134,000 tech specialists every year to remain sustainable within the industry.

With 1.3m people working as a technological specialist as of 2014, the void is becoming even harder to fill. Businesses around the country are looking to apprentices to fill the widening skills gap.

Experian’s data further uncovers the improvements made in communication between business owners and apprentices. In 2015 alone, businesses are twice as more likely to hire an apprentice, with a record number of apprentices applying for roles.

Technology apprenticeships have proved attractive for young recruits, with 14 applicants for every tech apprenticeship vacancy advertised, compared with an average of 9 applicants for apprenticeship vacancies in general.

Margaret Sambell, director of strategy at The Tech Partnership claims that apprentices are now rivalling graduates when applying for vacant technology positions. With 2015’s A-Level results being released, graduates are likely to consider an apprenticeship when considering their future.

A number of small business owners share Sambell’s views and recommend hiring apprentices to fellow SME owners. Jon Hulme, co-founder of The Craft Gin Club talks about his experiences with hiring apprentices.

‘‘I have been taking on two apprentices a year for the past 3 years and find they add value very quickly: I recruit for aptitude and attitude and in my experience apprentices gain skills fast and are keen to apply them in the business.’’

‘‘I also find they bring enthusiasm and new ideas – I have been very pleased with the contribution they make.’’