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BAE Named Apprenticeships Large Employer of the Year


Engineering company, BAE Systems, has been named Large Employer of the Year at the Learning and Skills Council's 2005 Apprenticeship Awards.

BAE Systems typically recruits around 280 apprentices a year to meet its commitment to customers and, on a larger scale, to help tackle the national shortage of qualified engineering staff.

John Lee Male, Head of Learning and Development at BAE Systems, said: "The low attrition rate of the programme ensures that BAE Systems maintains and enhances its staff capability with enthusiastic and skilled young people who often fill senior positions as their careers develop.

"Our apprentices are self motivated, ready to take the initiative and go into problem-solving mode - reducing production time for the work they do by up to 25%."

Stephen Gardner, Director of work based learning at the Learning and Skills Council, said that apprenticeships demonstrated businesses commitment to boosting skills.

"Currently one-fifth of job vacancies - some 135,000 places - remain unfilled because of a lack of skilled applicants," he said. "The National Apprenticeship Awards are a great opportunity to recognise the crucial contribution UK businesses are making to raise skill levels, and improve productivity and competitiveness nationally."

Other employer winners were Cumbria hauliers and livestock carriers, Wm Armstrong Ltd, Somerset-based, Upper Cut Hair Salons, and micro-employer, Carpeting Merseyside.

The Awards are the second to be held by the Learning and Skills Council and are designed to recognise employers who are successfully using Apprenticeships to improve business performance as well as the hard work and commitment of young people.

A record 1,000 entries were received from employers and young people this year. The winners were announced last night (16 June) in a ceremony at the London Hilton, Park Lane, hosted by four-time medallist Sir Matthew Pinsent and Gold medal winning cox Garry Herbert.

Employer Award winners:
Employer - 250 plus employees: BAE Systems Plc
Employer - 50-249 employees: WM Armstrong (Longtown) Ltd
Employer - Less than 50 employees: Upper Cut Hair Salons
Employer - Less than 9 employees: Carpeting Merseyside


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