Greene King is reminding both those receiving exam results this month and hospitality businesses of the importance of apprenticeships in its latest research. Apprenticeships play a valuable role in promoting social mobility and providing alternative career paths for young people and Greene King is proud to have supported over 11,000 apprenticeship starts since its industry-leading programme began eight years ago.
A report released today by Greene King in partnership with Lifetime Training, The Benefits of Apprenticeships to the Hospitality Sector, shows that after a drop in apprenticeship starts in 2017/18 (from 500,000 a year down to 376,000) the statistics are now on the up, with a 4% increase in the year to May 2019.
The CEBR report, commissioned by Greene King and Lifetime Training shows the economic value of more apprentices, with the rise in the productivity of apprenticeships leading to gains of over £40 million for the sector last year. It also found that a company in the hospitality sector, having provided a Level 2 apprenticeship, can expect to recoup these costs just 10 months after completion which is faster than most other sectors, including retail, engineering and financial services.
The value of apprenticeships is clear for both employers and young people. Many employers will see economic benefits from hiring an apprentice even when they are not yet fully qualified, as they offset their wage and training with what they put into the business. The average net annual benefit of hospitality and catering apprentices during their training period is over £2,380 across England alone.
However, it is not only the economic benefits that need to be appreciated. Greene King and Lifetime Training are striving to debunk the myth that apprenticeships are a second class route for those planning their next educational or employment journey. Indeed, the average wage premium for a Level 3 apprentice stands at approximately 9% more compared to the wage of a person in the same role but without an apprenticeship behind them and the higher the apprenticeship level achieved, the greater the wage the apprentice can receive.
Graham Briggs, head of employability programmes for Greene King, said: “Apprenticeships hold the stigma of being for those who ‘drop out’ of higher or further education, or are more suited to those whose study careers were not particularly successful. This must stop.
“Apprenticeships are an excellent alternative to those journeys and there could be a programme to suit many people aged 16 and above out there, especially in hospitality.
“At Greene King, we’re exceptionally proud of our programmes and apprentices. With dozens of awards accumulated and over 11,000 apprentices supported since we started the scheme in 2011, we know we’re doing things in the right way. We also know our apprentices enjoy learning while at the same time kick – starting their careers with us and so earning money. That’s why we have pledged to support 20,000 apprenticeships by 2022.”
Rt Hon Robert Halfon MP, Chair of the Education Select Committee and author of a foreword for the report, commented: “Our work at the House of Commons Education Select Committee centres around two key areas: tackling social injustice and boosting levels of productivity. Apprenticeships play a vital role in helping to achieve both of these goals. As this report shows, the benefit of apprenticeships extends beyond individuals and touches every region in the UK, providing an economic stimulus and helping tackle the skills shortage we are currently facing.
“I congratulate Greene King for continuing to raise the profile of apprenticeships, following their commitment to hire 20,000 apprenticeships by 2022. I want to encourage other companies to follow the hospitality sector’s example and put apprentices and the value of lifelong learning at the core of what they do. This is vital for the health of our economy and to allow people from all backgrounds to reach their full potential.”