Suffolk employers get behind new initiative to hire 500 apprentices in 100 days

A new initiative in Suffolk aims to have employers around the county commit to recruiting 500 apprentices in the next 100 working days.

Entitled “Suffolk 500”, the campaign seeks to encourage more Suffolk businesses to make the most of Governmental support for apprenticeships.

As part of the initiative, Suffolk County Council will be working with Apprenticeships Suffolk Business Service (ASBS) and Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, which hosted the launch party on Monday at its Ipswich offices.

Teresa Logan, ASBS director, said: “ASBS works with employers in Suffolk to create apprenticeship roles in local businesses and to make taking on an apprentice simple and easy. ASBS provides free advice to help businesses meet their recruitment and business development needs through apprenticeships, and to source the best training and support.”

She went on to say how she hopes the campaign becomes an integral part of the county’s economy.

John Dugmore, chief executive of Suffolk Chamber, also spoke at the launch where he stressed the importance of apprentices in the context of the county meeting its skills requirements.

Both he and Paul Winter, chief executive of Ipswich Building Society pledged to create a new apprenticeship role as part of the campaign.

The businesses that are keen to be part of the campaign will have the opportunity to meet with ASBS to learn more about training requirements and what apprenticeship programmes are best suited to them.

After the initial discussion the firms will be referred to a training provider that will give them advice and any support they may need to hire a successful recruit.

Lisa Chambers, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for education and skills, said: “The greatest asset any employer has is their workforce; by investing in them they are investing in the future success of their business.”