Council apprentices will save authority around £23,000

Apprentices gain qualifications as well as practical experience.
Apprentices gain qualifications as well as practical experience.

Amber Valley Borough Council is planning to recruit apprentices in a bid to inject young blood into the organisation.

A report to the council said it is “very difficult” for young people to enter the authority’s operational workforce, as the posts require significant skills and experience, which recent school leavers are unlikely to possess.

A recent review of the operational workforce also identified that more than 70 per cent of the authority’s employees are aged over 40.

The report said: “Whilst this ensures high levels of skills and experience, it also presents the potential for the loss of these skills over a relatively short period as staff retire.

“It is therefore wise to ensure effective long term succession planning, by recruiting and training younger members of staff.”

Officers have consulted with training providers and have established an apprenticeship programme, which it is anticipated will reduce both the barriers to employment for younger people.

Currently the council recruits to six seasonal positions each year to cope with the higher workload during the growing season.

Over a two-year period it is proposed to move away from this model, to the employment of apprentices on fixed term contracts. Recuitment has already begun, with the new recruits staring in March 2013.

It is hoped the move will save the council around £23,000 over two years.

The recommendations will be discussed by councillors at a full Amber Valley Borough Council meeting on December 12.