The Glass and Glazing Federation (GGF) has announced that it will be launching a GGF Apprenticeship Scheme from January 2022, to help Member companies recruit, train and qualify apprentices. Working in partnership with training experts, Total Support Training and the industry awarding body, GQA Qualifications, the GGF Apprenticeship Scheme aims to fund training for apprentices of up to £4000 per GGF Member Company.
The reasons for this new initiative were explained by John Agnew, GGF Group Managing Director: “In the current landscape for skills and labour, all companies are struggling to recruit new people into the industry. Currently apprenticeships are not working effectively for the glazing sector. The investment from the GGF will be an incentive for GGF Members to take on apprentices and to ensure they are trained and qualified to a level of competence that makes apprentices assets, not liabilities to a business.”
The GGF decision was based on both the current landscape and feedback from GGF Members who will no doubt be encouraged by this significant level of financial support.
The Government’s strategies and targets for Net Zero between now and 2050, will require an estimated 500,000 additional skilled workers for the Construction Sector, the figure includes the Glass, Glazing and Fenestration Industries need for more skilled workers. Recognising this need and potential, the GGF Apprenticeship Scheme will be of real benefit to its Members.
John Agnew adds, “From numerous meetings and discussions with GGF Members, it is clear that they are finding agency staff are not always the long term solution to their skills requirements and existing apprenticeship schemes do not offer training on glazing and glass processing for example. In addition, the current Government and local authority funding, is for workers already in the industry with prior knowledge and not focused on people new to the industry.”
The GGF Apprenticeship Scheme will set a clear career pathway that will attract new people into the sector including those leaving school and / or college. The training funding will be based around the GGF Glazing Manual which contains the industry’s most accurate and up to date technical information and guidance.
The GGF has set the criteria for companies taking part in the Apprenticeship Scheme.
- Each GGF Member will need to appoint a dedicated mentor for the apprentice to help steer the apprentice through training and qualifications
- Funding will apply to apprentices who are employed by a GGF Member
- Employers must agree to the GGF vetting and criteria
- Employers receiving the funding have to commit the balance of the training costs
- All funding payments will be linked to milestone achievements (measured by qualifications, assessment and skills) in the apprentice’s pathway
- Funding for training and qualifications will cover two years of the apprenticeship
The GGF Apprenticeship Scheme will start with a pilot with up to 20 apprentices in the following disciplines:
- Glass Processing
The below pathways and other will follow as required by members
- Window Film Application
- Fire Resistant Glazing
John Agnew added, “If the pilot scheme for the Apprenticeship Scheme proves successful, we will aim to fund training for 200 apprentices. The GGF is making the funding and framework available but the success of this initiative is dependent on GGF Members taking advantage of this incentive, to recruit new people to the industry and train them to professional levels. It is a long term strategy and exclusive to GGF Members at present. Companies who are not GGF members may be able to avail of the scheme going forward but no funding from GGF would be available.”
Anda Gregory, GGF Chief Development Officer, summed up: “This is a really exciting initiative and one that our Members and the wider industry have been crying out for. It leverages the GGF’s Technical and Health, Safety & Environment experts’ knowledge to create something that will really work for our industry. It’s the first of many developments we are working on for the good of the industry to help tackle the skills shortage.”
To find out more about the GGF Apprenticeship Scheme please contact email@example.com
To see the GGF Apprenticeship Scheme promotional video please click here
To find out more about the courses and qualifications available from GGF Training, please visit ggf.totalsupport.org.uk