Skills for Logistics puts apprenticeships on the agenda

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Skills for Logistics is backing National Apprenticeship Week which takes place from 1st to 5th February providing a comprehensive window on apprenticeship opportunities.

Between 2005/6 and 2008/9 apprenticeships certified by Skills for Logistics increased by 130 per cent and in response to this, SfL is developing an expanded range of apprenticeship schemes covering the wide selection of disciplines and career options available within the freight logistics industry.

Chief executive Dr Mick Jackson said: “In recent years there has been a welcome increase in the number of apprentices as many employers in the freight logistics industry offer such schemes. Apprenticeships have the advantage, popular with both employers and workers, of providing effective education alongside practical on-the-job training. This gives young workers the happy balance of learning and obtaining a qualification, alongside the satisfaction of carrying out important and rewarding work and gaining that crucial experience and transferable skills which serve as the springboard for their career.

“Employers should also be aware that, in the short term, the national apprenticeship scheme is offering apprenticeship grants of £2,500 for employers of 16 and 17 year olds. I urge them to take advantage of this offer straight away.”

SfL apprenticeships comprise of four elements – an NVQ; a technical or knowledge based certificate; key/functional skills; and awareness of employment responsibilities and rights.

Apprenticeship frameworks for the logistics sector are available in driving goods vehicles, carrying and delivering goods, traffic office, warehouse and storage, mail services and purchasing and supply. Advanced apprenticeships are available in driving goods vehicles, traffic office, logistics operations management and purchasing and supply management. A higher apprenticeship is available in purchasing and supply management.

Smiths News, the newspaper and wholesaler, introduced the SfL Warehousing and Storage apprenticeship scheme in January 2009. Glenn Leech, HR Director for Smiths News said: “One year after the introduction of our apprentice scheme we are already seeing the benefits and contributions those members of staff are making.”

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