The Alliance of Sector Skills Councils

Apprenticeship Week - SummitSkills appeals for employer help to find the best

06 Feb 2012

The fifth annual National Apprenticeship Week takes place on 6–10 February and SummitSkills  is encouraging employers to mark the week by helping to identify the best of the best apprentices in the building services engineering sector through its Skill M&E competitions.

Every year National Apprenticeship Week promotes the benefits of apprenticeships for both businesses and individuals. Apprenticeships bring productive, enthusiastic and reliable new employees into an organisation and taking on an apprentice demonstrates to customers and suppliers an employer’s commitment to investing in their employees.
SummitSkills is the sector skills council for the building services engineering (BSE) sector, representing the electrotechnical, heating and ventilating, air conditioning and refrigeration and plumbing industries.  The organisation has just launched its 2012 Skill M&E competitions - a suite of four skills competitions (SkillELECTRIC, SkillFRIDGE, SkillPIPE and SkillPLUMB), that search for the very best mechanical and electrical engineers. The competitions are open to all but are targeted at those people who are employed, currently studying or have completed their studies within the last 12 months.
Neil Collishaw, head of Skill M&E competitions at SummitSkills, said: “Our industry sector is predominately made up of SMEs and employers may not truly realise the opportunities apprentices offer their businesses. Apprenticeships can help employers to improve productivity and to be more competitive. Apprenticeships deliver the skills that a business needs and will help an organisation develop the specialist knowledge needed to keep pace with the latest technology and working practices in their industry.”
The apprentices who make it into the Skill M&E competitions could be in with the chance of being named ‘best in the UK’ in their skill area. Outstanding competitors from this year’s competitions may also be invited to compete for a place in the UK team that represents the country at the international skills competition WorldSkills in Leipzig, Germany, in 2013. For more information visit or call 01908 303972.
National Apprenticeship Week is organised by the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS), who offer support to those looking for apprenticeships and to employers recruiting apprentices. More information about the NAS is available by calling 08000 150 600 or by visiting the NAS website at Also on this website employers will find an easy to use ‘Return on Investment (ROI) Calculator’, designed to help them understand the potential returns from investing in apprenticeships. The ROI calculator estimates the average costs of employing and training an apprentice against the benefits of their additional productivity on the business.

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