ECITB unveils nearly £100 million in industry training investment
29 Jan 2020
The Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB) has announced a £90 million investment plan plus a new Graduate Development Grant programme designed to massively boost skills.
The three year business plan Leading Industry Learning 2020-2022, published by the Government-sponsored skills body follows the decision by employers in October to back an increase in the industrial training levy necessary to fund a major expansion in training and skills.
In addition to investing in research programmes and a review of qualifications, the ECITB’s business plan pledges £70 million alone in training grants for employers, including:
£25m to address critical skills gaps and shortages
£15m to train new entrants coming into the industry, including apprentices, workers from other sectors and a new ECITB graduate development programme set to be launched this month.
£5m towards assuring competence to maintain a capable, safe and transferable workforce.
£25m to train existing staff and new entrants in emerging and future skills, such as advanced digital skills and Industry 4.0 technologies.
£0.5m for diversity and inclusion training to help the industry foster more diverse and inclusive workplaces.
ECITB chief executive Chris Claydon said:
“With demand for training outstripping available funding, the ECITB identified the need to increase the levy, a decision that received substantial backing from employers.
“With this new mandate, the onus is now on the ECITB to deliver against our plans and that is very much the focus of everyone at the ECITB. We are determined to demonstrate how the training levy can provide real value in helping employers tackle current skills challenges, boost productivity and deliver a workforce equipped for the future.”
Meanwhile the new Graduate Development Programme will support more than 150 people annually, providing each one with £12,000 over three years.
The grant also supports engineering graduates being developed against the Engineering Council Standard for Professional Engineering Competencies, allowing companies to use their own training schemes as well as ECITB-designed programmes.
Around 130 graduate recruits from 20 companies were being supported by the scheme at the start of 2020.
Paul Fox, HR director at Offshore Design Engineering Ltd said: “It makes perfect sense to invest in specialist training for those embarking on engineering careers from a university background in the same way as we do for school-leavers entering into apprenticeships. It is a huge step forward in the way we approach learning and development for highly skilled new recruits.”