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58% of employers keen to hire more apprentices in first half of 2021: Report

More than 58 per cent of the companies reviewed were keen on increasing their apprenticeship hiring in the first half of this year, with a preference for women apprentices witnessing a 10 per cent growth from the last year, according to a report.

Around 41 per cent of the companies reviewed are keen on hiring apprenticeships, and the employers who expressed interest in hiring apprentices have increased by 8 per cent this half year compared to the previous half year (33 per cent), according to the 'Apprenticeship Outlook Report for H1 2021 (January to June 2021)' by NETAP (National Employability through Apprenticeship Programme) from TeamLease Skills University.

Not only there is buoyancy towards the concept of apprenticeship, employers are even keen to ramp up their apprenticeship hiring, as more than 58 per cent of the companies reviewed were keen on increasing their apprenticeship hiring indicating positive momentum in the apprenticeship eco-system.

The Apprenticeship Outlook Report covered 14 cities and 18 leading sectors and has surveyed 600 companies to capture the trend during H1 2021 (January to June).

It further revealed that out of the 18 sectors reviewed more than 16 were keen on hiring apprentices.

While manufacturing (55 per cent), automobiles and ancillaries (51 per cent) and retail (48 per cent) are the leaders, sectors like travel and hospitality and beauty and wellness, that were severely hit by the pandemic also seems to be making a strong come back.

Travel and hospitality and beauty and wellness, which had declined by 10 per cent and 5 per cent, respectively in the previous half year (July - December 2020) have made a remarkable turnaround.

The net apprenticeship outlook for travel and hospitality and beauty and wellness have grown by 34 per cent and 31 per cent, respectively, it noted.

The report findings also indicate a positive time for women apprentices as the overall preference for women apprentices has increased by 10 per cent year-on-year, especially in sectors like agriculture, where inclination to hire women candidates has increased by 40 per cent.

Cities like Bangalore, Mumbai and Kolkata are the most welcoming towards the women candidates compared to other cities, the report observed.

"Apprentice hiring has embarked on a very positive trajectory in the last couple of years as more employers are realising the merit of the apprenticeship model to build a robust pipeline of employable talent.

"In fact, from 2018, to now, we have seen a 2.5 per cent annual growth in employers, who are willing to increase their apprentice intake. This positive momentum has happened despite the dip in the labour market during the Covid-19 lockdown," NETAP, TeamLease Skill University, Vice-President Sumit Kumar said.

Meanwhile, from a city perspective, with more than 57 per cent of the employers indicating their willingness to hire apprentices, Chennai has emerged as the most apprentice friendly city.

Taking into account business size, the net apprenticeship outlook is projected to see a positive increase across small, medium and large businesses, it stated.