P. Ryan, H. Gospel and P. Lewis
British Journal of Industrial Relations, vol. 45, 2007, p. 127-153
The governments of several advanced economies seek nowadays to promote work-based vocational training for young people in general, and apprenticeship in particular. The British government uses public subsidies, channelled through the Apprenticeship programme. In this context, this article addresses the links between large firms and apprenticeship training in Britain, using data from interviews with managers in 28 organisations. Results show that there is limited use of apprenticeship outside the government's Advanced Apprenticeship programme. Employers find that recruitment and upgrade training are more cost-effective than apprenticeship except in cases where skills must be built on a platform of extensive technical knowledge. Finally, employers who value the resulting formal qualifications, such as recognised NVQs and Technical Certificates, are more likely to participate in Advanced Apprenticeship schemes than those who do not.