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Are construction workers willing to compete?

February 29 is the last day for construction employers and apprentices to enter the Apprenticeship Awards 2008.
The awards honour top apprentices and employers in the UK and employers of all sizes from within the construction industry are being encouraged by the Learning and Skills Council to enter it.

Now in its fifth year, the Apprenticeship Awards recognises top apprentices and the work of employers who are using apprenticeships to build their future workforce and tackle skills shortages within the industry.

Former award winners from the construction industry include Nottinghamshire-based Dukeries Building company and Craig Hambling based in Lancashire.

'As early as the 1990's, we recognised a chronic shortage of skilled labour within the construction industry and wanted to combat this problem,' said Jan Bowman of Craig Hambling, Highly Commended in the Small Employer of the Year category in 2007. 'We value our apprentices and aim to provide as much support as possible to help them succeed and learn'.

There are currently 240,000 apprentices working in over 130,000 organisations in England.

Employers are eligible to enter in one of four categories depending on company size; Micro (1-9 employees), Small (10-49 employees), Medium (50-249 employees) and Large (250+ employees). The employer awards' assessment criteria includes commitment to developing workforce through apprenticeships and clear demonstration of the way the programme has benefited their business.

There are also four categories open to individuals - Apprentice of the Year, Advanced Apprentice of the Year, Young Apprentice of the Year and Personal Achiever of the Year.

This year the winners will be announced at the awards ceremony at London's Royal Horticultural Halls on July 10, 2008.

The February 29 entry deadline coincides with the first ever national Apprenticeship Week from February 25-29.

To enter the awards visit www.apprenticeships.org.uk/awards
13 February 2008

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