The managing director of Scottish Gas has said that he is proud of his company’s record regarding apprenticeships. Kevin Roxbugh, who has been working with the company for more than 30 years, is also urging small businesses to follow their lead and take on more young apprentices.
The managing director said:
In Scottish Gas we are very pleased and proud of our history of apprenticeships and we are keen to encourage the other Scottish businesses to consider what more they can do as the economy picks up to really encourage apprenticeships across their organisation.
The energy provider, who are the Scottish arm of British Gas, has recruited and trained more than 500 members of staff from apprenticeship schemes over the last decade. The company invested around £30,000 in each person who came to Scottish Gas in an apprentice role.
Mr. Roxburgh, who hails from Lancaster and has been working in the role of managing director for the last four years, was also asked what kind of businesses he thought should offer more apprenticeship schemes. He responded:
The big corporates tend to do better in this situation because obviously they invest more. It would be good to see a broader spread across maybe some of the smaller businesses and the more entrepreneurial businesses.
However, the head of external affairs at the Federation Of Small Businesses, said that it’s not always feasible. He explained that it’s bureaucratic and costly to hire apprentices to small business.
Colin Borland said:
A lot of our members would like to take on apprentices, they see the value and not just in their business and sector but to the young person. There’s a reason why most apprentices tend to be taken on by big PLCs or by government and that’s because it’s a very bureaucratic system.
Mr. Borland also took the opportunity to have a dig at the high costs that Scottish Gas and their parent company British Gas often force businesses to pay across the United Kingdom. He said:
Everything would be easier if Scottish Gas cut their bills. Utility bills are a major overhead for our members.
Recent figures in Scotland show that 80% of young people believe there are too many citizens looking to settle into an apprenticeship. Therefore, there are not enough places available for them.
Apprenticeships are open to all age groups above 16 years. It is a job that comes with training so that you can acquire a national certificate while you work. They can take between one and four years to complete. They come with salaries and paid holidays.