Monday, July 22, 2024
UK freight association urges members to consider recruiting apprentices

UK freight association urges members to consider recruiting apprentices

It’s a tough call, with so much uncertainty facing the freight forwarding and logistics sector, but now is the time to step up apprentice recruitment, says the British International Freight Association (BIFA).It is National Apprentice Week next week, and BIFA is taking the opportunity to remind its members that the International Freight Forwarding specialist apprenticeship, which BIFA helped create in 2018, is an ideal entry point for the industry.As part of National Apprenticeship Week, BIFA is running an online event for members on February 8th, that will assist in navigating the perceived red tape around recruiting apprentices.

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Most of the trade association’s members are SMEs and may be nervous about apprentice recruitment. So it wants to share its own experience of employing its first two apprentices to help guide and reassure members about the processes involved.BIFA member services director Carl Hobbis, who has responsibility for the trade association’s training and development programme said: “More than 1,000 apprentices have already started the pathway, with great success.“However, the 184 apprentices that have started the International Freight Forwarding Specialist apprenticeship during the last 12 months, represents a reduction of 27%, year-on-year.“Forwarding businesses have many difficult commercial decisions to make, but shelving apprenticeships should not be one of them.

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“We are at an important crossroads, and we must protect the future of the sector, which has an ageing employee dynamic and needs an influx of new blood.”BIFA is reminding its members that for SMEs, the training costs of the International Freight Forwarding Specialist Apprenticeship can be as little as £450 per apprentice. It includes a BTEC Customs qualification for the apprentice as well, which makes it great value.BIFA Director General, Steve Parker concludes: “Now, more than ever, we need to promote the industry and give young people employment opportunities. We have had an apprenticeship standard for international freight forwarding for six years and the sector continues to be in the spotlight as a result of the current supply chain disruptions, so what a great time to give someone an opportunity of a career in freightforwarding and logistics.”

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James Graham

James Graham is an award-winning transport media journalist with a long background in the commercial freight sector, including commercial aviation and the aviation supply chain. He was the initial Air Cargo Week journalist and retuned later for a stint as editor. He continues his association as editor of the monthly supplements. He has reported for the newspaper from global locations as well as the UK.

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