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Jon Kennard


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News: Apprenticeship vacancies increase by a quarter year on year


Apprenticeships are growing in popularity among both employers and young people according to figures released today by the National Apprenticeship Service.
The quarterly apprenticeship Index reveals a 24% increase in apprenticeship vacancies posted online on the apprenticeship vacancies website between August and October 2013 (Academic Year Q1 2013/14) compared with the same period the previous year – 37,410 vacancies were advertised over the three months versus 30,230 in 2012.
But with online applications leaping by 43% (to 461,530), the Government is urging employers to create more apprenticeship positions in order to meet the demand.
The Index also reveals that apprenticeships are attracting increasing numbers of applications from female candidates. Online applications from women have increased by more than half since 2012, with 216,100 applications made by females in the three month period, a 55% increase. This has also served to narrow the male gender bias, with 47% of all applications for apprenticeships made by females in 2013 compared to 43% the previous year. (iii)
Matthew Hancock MP, Skills and Enterprise Minister, said: "These figures show that apprenticeships are growing in appeal to young people, and yet more young women are seeking out this unique opportunity to earn while they learn and gain a recognised qualification while notching up vital work experience. 
"With new independent research revealing that one in five employers currently have former apprentices working in senior, board level, positions, it’s also very encouraging to see vacancies increasing and new employers coming on board. But with each online position attracting an average of 12 applications, demand continues to outstrip supply and I would urge more employers to consider how they can take advantage of this available pool of talent and grow their business through apprenticeships.”
The greatest numbers of both applications and vacancies were in the Business, Administration and Law sector with 165,410 applications made during the period for some 15,550 apprenticeships. The sector with the highest ratio of applications to vacancies was Education and Training, which attracted an average of 27 applications per vacancy, followed by Arts, Media and Publishing (26) and Information and Communication Technology (20). The lowest ratio, 10 applications per vacancy, was to be found in Retail and Commercial Enterprise and Science and Mathematics.
Other key highlights from the past year include:

  • Vacancies for Higher Apprenticeships grew most significantly with an increase of 41% year on year, followed by Advanced Apprenticeships (32% growth) and Intermediate Apprenticeships (19% growth)
  • 16th August – the day after A Level results were announced – saw the highest number of live vacancies, with 17,610 positions available.  The greatest number of applications (8890) were submitted on 4th September
  • The North East recorded the greatest leap in Apprenticeship applications, with 33,430 applications made during the period, a 60% increase on the previous year. This was followed by Yorkshire and The Humber (59%) and the South West (58%)
  • Yorkshire and The Humber, together with the South East, witnessed the biggest increase in Apprenticeship vacancies (38%), followed by the East Midlands (37%) and South West (29%)
  • London and the North East saw the most competition per online vacancy, with each vacancy attracting an average of 18 applicants
  • At a local authority level, Salford in Greater Manchester saw the biggest jump in applications with an increase of 145%.

To apply for, or advertise a vacancy, please visit You can also download AV Search via the Android or iTunes app stores to find Apprenticeship vacancies in your area

Author Profile Picture
Jon Kennard

Freelance writer

Read more from Jon Kennard

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