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Shared Apprenticeship Partnership Helps McGills Apprentices

The partnership approach to apprenticeship training through the private and public sector through Shared Apprenticeship Limited (SAL) has helped McGills apprentices stay in employment.

When McGills apprentices have to go through the stress and grief associated with the redundancies, the 6 apprentices working with McGIlls through SAL were moved to other host employers within 4 days. Even though some of these placement might be shorter term the apprentices continue to be paid, and work towards their qualification. Also these short term placement gives me time to look for something else for them.

Kevin Murphy, SAL Chair of the Board, stated, “I am delighted we have been able to move our apprentices who lost their placement with McGills to different host employers so very quickly. This shows the benefit of the SAL to both apprentices, who we can move rapidly and to employers, who don’t have to commit to taking on an apprentice long term. We continue to be in discussion with Angus Council, CITB, SECTT, SNIPEF and Dundee City Council about the support SAL can offer to other apprentices who were made redundant from McGills and I hope that this is something we can help with. I would like to take this opportunity and thank all the companies and partners who have been working with SAL over the years. At the same time I would like to encourage others to contact us to see if we could work together in the future to the mutual benefit”.

A number of local businesses working with SAL have stepped up to take on these additional apprentices. Craig Bruce, Managing Director at Pert Bruce Construction, explained, “Pert Bruce Construction have supported Shared Apprentice apprentices in these difficult times. We have taken three joinery apprentices who were previously placed with McGill’s. This is one of the biggest benefits of the scheme, as they can quickly react by placing apprentices with another host employer to safeguard their training”.

One of the affected apprentices, Robbie Phillips, a 2nd year apprentice, explained, “I worked with McGills through SAL for over a year. I really enjoyed working with them and I hoped I would stay there long term. Unexpectedly the company went into administration. Fortunately I am employed by Shared Apprentice Limited and they were able to find me a new placement within a day. I finished at McGills on Friday and on Tuesday I started with Derek McNulty”.

The Shared Apprentice Ltd (SAL), the first of its kind in Scotland, has been established to offer added value apprenticeships in a geographical area that is subject to low wage rates, high youth unemployment, and an industry skills shortage within the construction sector. The programme specifically enables small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) to deliver apprenticeship opportunities that they have would otherwise been unable to provide.

The programme which is currently in its 4th year of operation began operation in Angus, has now expanded to Dundee and has further expansion opportunities through request from other local authorities including Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Orkney, Fife, Edinburgh and others.

The SAL is a collaborative approach between public and private partners to increase the skills levels in the construction sector. As a partnership SAL has created a Private Limited Company that employs only apprentices whilst they are completing their training.

For more information on Shared Apprenticeship Limited visit their website here.

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