The collision repair sector Trailblazer Group has been given approval to develop standards for a range of single skill apprenticeships in accident repair.
The group says without funding for Single Skills Apprenticeships in Paint, Panel and Mechanical, recognised qualifications in core occupations required to safely and efficiently repair collision damaged vehicles could have been lost. This would have exacerbated the existing skills gap, highlighted in the economic climate survey published by ABP, in the automotive repair sector, and had a more serious long term impact on the industry.
The UK Government is applying significant focus on Apprenticeships and implementing reforms in both their frameworks and how they are funded.
Under these reforms, groups of employers known as Trailblazers are leading the way and implementing changes to Apprenticeships across UK industry. As a result of these outcomes, the Government is setting funding caps for Apprenticeships. Sectors that do not have Trailblazers run the risk of losing Apprenticeship funding.
Dean Lander, head of operations at Thatcham Research said “Supporting young talent to enter this industry is imperative. Securing commitment from the Government for continued support for apprenticeships in this sector is a significant achievement. Next we must find new ways to show off this technically challenged and fascinating industry to schools, colleges and the talent of the future”.
Over the coming weeks and months, the Group will work collaboratively with other automotive repair groups that have already started on this journey, to ensure all standards complement each other and enable the safe and effective repair of motor vehicles by highly skilled technicians.
Trailblazer chair Tom Hudd, UKARRC technical services manager at Direct Line Group said “The industry is in need of modern repair techniques to be added to the individual disciplines that this Trailblazer group are passionate about building, we will create forward thinking apprenticeships that will support the industry in building a solid platform for the future”.