The number of construction apprentices in Scotland has hit a six-year high, new figures reveal.
According to the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), the recruitment of Scottish apprentices in the sector has increased every year since 2011.
The positive statistics released ahead of Scottish Apprenticeship Week, shows CITB Scotland directly trained 1,925 new modern apprentices, up 35 per cent from 1,422 apprentices in 2011 to 1,925 in 2016.
And with CITB research predicting that more than 12,000 new workers are needed in the next five years, employers are being encouraged to consider taking on an apprentice for the first time, or to add to their current workforce, to help this upward trend continue.
Ian Hughes, strategic partnerships director at CITB Scotland, said: “Scottish Apprenticeship Week is the perfect platform to highlight the value of apprenticeships to construction employers and the excellent career opportunities available.
“The industry needs a skilled workforce, with thousands of new people coming into it. Employers of all sizes across the sector have a key role to play in developing the next generation of industry professionals.”
The figures were welcomed by Stephen Sheridan, Key Sector Manager for Construction at Skills Development Scotland (SDS).
He said: “It’s great to see the construction companies, with the support of CITB, continuing to invest in apprenticeships to develop their workforce and to ensure the sector has the right skills for the future.
“There’s no better time than Scottish Apprenticeship Week to find out more about the benefits apprenticeships bring to businesses – large and small – and the head-start they can give young people in their careers that will last them a lifetime.”