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Warwickshire Skills Hub supports businesses, schools and communities to create a well-skilled population that meets the needs of the county’s evolving economy.

An important element of this support is help for businesses to access the right apprenticeships for them and funding opportunities to make them happen. Fay Winterburn, Lead Commissioner: Employability and Skills at Warwickshire Skills Hub, explains more... 

Taking on an apprentice is a great way to develop and grow your workforce. Apprenticeships offer the perfect combination of study and job training. The training can be adapted according to the needs of any business which is considering an apprenticeship as an option to develop their workforce.

From the other side of the equation, for people looking to launch their careers in a huge range of industries, or to upskill themselves, an apprenticeship could be an amazing option. It does not matter what age you are or what level of knowledge you have, a variety of great apprenticeship options is available in a diverse range of sectors, going right up to a degree level.

In National Apprenticeship Week, Warwickshire Skills Hub will be proud to partake in a week-long celebration bringing together businesses and apprentices across the country to shine a light on the positive impact that apprenticeships make to individuals, businesses and the wider economy. 

Warwickshire County Council's Portfolio Holder for Economy, Cllr Martin Watson, said:

"The County Council is delighted to support National Apprenticeship Week. We are very proud of all the excellent work that our Warwickshire Skills Hub team does to promote and set up apprenticeships around the county and we remain totally committed to continuing all that we do to grow and shape apprenticeship opportunities in Warwickshire."

SMEs looking to recruit new talent or upskill existing staff can now apply for three different strands of support from Warwickshire County Council’s Future Apprenticeships Fund.  

This funding is part of Warwickshire County Council’s £900,000, Future Skills Programme, designed to deliver a diverse range of support to help job-seekers into, or back into, work through apprenticeships.  

The Future Apprenticeships Fund strands are:  

Future Apprenticeships: Salary Support Programme - If you take on an apprentice in new and emerging technologies such as Vehicle Electrification, Battery Technology, Digital Skills or a standard that supports the Net Zero and Sustainability agenda, you can apply to this fund for £2,000 salary support.  

Future Focus Apprenticeships Programme: New Direction 50+ - SMEs taking on or upskilling an existing member of staff who is aged 50+ can apply to this fund to cover the cost of the 5% employer contribution for their apprenticeship training. Businesses can also apply for up to a maximum of £750 from the Additional Training Fund. This is for training that is identified outside of the apprenticeship standard. This can also be used to match fund an employer contribution should the amount exceed the WCC support.  

New Direction 50+ Skills Investment Fund - This programme is designed to support over 50s in gaining new knowledge and skills to help them progress within the workplace. It’s available to Warwickshire businesses who are wishing to invest in the progression of a 50+ employee to undertake further training which contributes to the future needs of the business. The programme offers up to £1,000 grant funding towards training or a qualification to be delivered by a college or independent training provider.  

Businesses wanting to make multiple applications for more than one employee may be considered up to a maximum of five up until 31st March 2024, to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and to be evidenced in a business growth plan outlining their future skills requirement. From April 1st 2024, this number will reduce to three applications per business.  

If you would like to know more about any of the above funding programmes and how you can apply, please contact Louise Stolz, Future Skills Business Support Advisor: 

We also offer the longstanding and widely successful WCC Levy Share Programme which help businesses cover the associated cost of apprenticeship training, allowing them to address skills gaps and shortages in industry and support growth. We work with businesses to help them explore which apprenticeships meet their business needs, identify a local provider and access Warwickshire County Council’s own levy funds, which can be shared with small and medium sized businesses. 

This programme is open to all Non-Apprenticeship Levy paying SMEs within Warwickshire. 

Our Apprenticeship Progression Programme is available to Warwickshire businesses wishing to invest in the progression of their staff and build upon a previous qualification which contributes to the new needs of the business. The programme offers a £1,000 incentive which is paid directly to the employer and supported to meet the needs of the business.  

If you would like to know more about any of the above funding programmes and how you can apply, please contact Steven Convery, Business Skills Support Advisor: 

Published: 5th February 2024

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