More employers hiring apprentices is vital to the Perth and Kinross economy according to the business-led group set up to develop the young workforce in the region.
DYW Perth and Kinross, along with Skills Development Scotland (SDS) is urging more employers to hire apprentices to boost their business and support the local economy.
The call comes ahead of Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2017 from 6 to 10 March.
Organised by SDS, the campaign highlights the benefits for businesses that have decided to invest in the skills of their employees.
Businesses in Scotland employed a record number of apprentices last year as more than 25,500 young people got the chance to work, learn and earn.
Last year there were 874 new Modern Apprenticeship starts in Perth and Kinross.
A survey of apprentice employers showed three quarters said that apprentices improved productivity, while nine out of ten would recommend apprenticeships to their industry.
Steven Stewart, Chair of DYW Perth and Kinross said: “Local employers hiring apprentices is vital to developing the young workforce and crucial for employers to make sure they have the right skills for the future.
“We encourage all employers – no matter their size to consider the benefits apprenticeships could bring to their business.
“There’s no better time than Scottish Apprenticeship Week to find out more about work based learning.”
SDS Head of Operations for North East Scotland Gordon MacDougall said: “Many people still think apprenticeships only cover traditional trades and are mainly for boys but that’s simply not the case nowadays.
“Apprenticeships are changing with a range of opportunities for everyone to work, learn and earn.
“Employers can benefit from apprenticeships by making skills work for their business.
“If you are an employer looking to build a skilled, motivated workforce through apprenticeships, SDS can offer advice and support in person and via website www.apprenticeships.scot.”
Skills Development Scotland pays a contribution towards the cost of training apprentices on behalf of the Scottish Government.
New Foundation Apprenticeships mean young people can also now start a Modern Apprenticeship at school while Graduate Level Apprenticeships provide employees with work based learning opportunities to degree level.
Find out more at www.apprenticeships.scot where employers can also post vacancies for free.