On the 11th November 2009, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills published a new skills strategy White Paper (Skills for Growth).
This included reference to the government using its procurement powers to ‘promote skills training and apprenticeship opportunities’, also known as the government procurement policy. The government currently procures about £220 billion worth of goods and services a year, and plans to support 20,000 apprenticeships over the next three years by requiring government contractors to offer apprenticeships as a condition of obtaining future public contracts. This investment should help the UK keep in touch with the rest of the world within the digital industry and assist businesses in recruiting an apprentice.
More recently, as outlined in the 2020 Vision document, the government has committed to increasing the quantity and quality of apprenticeships in England to three million starts over the next five years. To assist with that target the 2020 Vision document puts in place a requirement that from September 2015 public procurement of contracts with a full life value of £10 million and above and duration of 12 months and above should be used to support skills development and delivery of the apprenticeship commitment.
The government’s 2020 Vision Document, along with the new Trailblazer Standards, should help to keep apprenticeships relevant and at a high standard. Commitment from employers to helping grow the apprenticeships system will help to grow industries as a whole.