More than 30,000 apprenticeships were pledged by employers during National Apprenticeship Week 2016 (14 – 18 March), according to the government.
From Greene King committing to hiring 10,000 apprentices (up from 2,000 in 2015), Microsoft and partners announcing plans to recruit 4,500, BT pledging 1,000, Deloitte 200 and Kwik Fit 150, pledges have been made by hundreds of businesses around the country. Other companies that have pledged new apprenticeships include BMW, Addleshaw Goddard LLP, Fortnum & Mason, Virgin Media, British Airways, Prezzo, and the Victoria and Albert Museum.
Traineeships, which give young people the work preparation training, English, maths and work experience needed to get an apprenticeship or other job, also got a boost during the week with employers large and small, including Halfords Ltd and Chelmsford JCP pledging 1,770 traineeship positions.
During National Apprenticeship Week 2015, employers pledged to recruit 23,000 apprentices.
Skills minister Nick Boles said: "This week I've travelled the country meeting apprentices doing the most incredible jobs, from cooking mussels at Rick Stein's restaurant to fixing helicopters for the Royal Navy.
"Apprenticeships offer working people the jobs and training they need to build a great career. An apprenticeship really can take you anywhere.
"Employers have pledged more than 30,000 new apprenticeships this week. That means over 30,000 more life changing opportunities for working people."
Now in its ninth year, National Apprenticeship Week is designed to celebrate apprenticeships and the positive impact they have on individuals, businesses and the wider economy. The overarching theme for 2016 was to show how individuals and businesses can achieve their ambitions of 'rising to the top' through apprenticeships.