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Ivor Searle invests in new apprentices - 02.10.2019

Recognising the need to recruit more young people into technical and engineering roles within the automotive and manufacturing sectors, the UK’s leading remanufacturer of major units for cars and vans, Ivor Searle, has taken on four new apprentices at its Cambridgeshire factory. IvorSearle_Apprentices_2019-1web-(1).jpg

Ivor Searle’s latest apprentice cohort joins four other apprentices in the company who are on their second or third year of training. The new recruits, studying towards a Diploma in Advanced Manufacturing Engineering (Foundation), will attend Cambridge Regional College one day per week as part of their three-year course.
Apprenticeships have been an integral part of Ivor Searle’s business continuity planning for many years. The 73-year old business aims to recruit at least three potential apprentices every year, so that they can learn the processes and engineering disciplines in each department, from stripping engines to final assembly and even future product development.
Commenting on the company’s latest investment in developing future engineers, David Eszenyi, Commercial Director at Ivor Searle, said:
“We’re delighted to welcome four new apprentices to Ivor Searle this year, who will have the opportunity to build a long-term career in an engineering environment. Ivor Searle has always been an advocate of apprenticeships, which enables trainees to earn while they learn. It’s the ideal platform to develop hands-on skills, which are in great demand by industry, as well as being part of a team. I started my own career as an apprentice machinist and a number of our senior staff joined Ivor Searle as apprentices.”
As a significant employer in the Cambridgeshire area, Ivor Searle participates in local recruitment fairs in order to highlight the benefits of an apprenticeship and raise awareness of opportunities within engineering. The company has attended the East Cambridgeshire Careers & Skills Fair for several years, which is held at Ely Cathedral in November.
Whilst Ivor Searle has increased the number of apprentices joining the company in 2019, government statistics reveal that the number of young people starting an apprenticeship has gone into reverse. Latest figures available up to July 2018 show there were 290,500 apprenticeship starts in the first three quarters of the 2017-18 academic year, compared with 440,300 in 2016-17, a drop of more than one third year-on-year.
A widely-held view across UK industry is that the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy in 2017 triggered the decline in new starters. Currently, the Apprenticeship Levy requires all public and private employers with a wage bill of more than £3million to contribute 0.5% of this cost into a central fund, which is ring-fenced for the provision of funding future apprenticeships. Although exempt from paying the levy, Ivor Searle contributes 5% of the cost of training an apprentice with the government footing the bill for the remaining 95%.
Photo caption:
Ivor Searle's new apprentices pictured left to right:  Shane Shanks; Brodie Brewer; Jacob Low; Connor Jones.

Filed under: Cambridge apprenticeships, engineering apprenticeships, Ivor Searle apprenticeships