Recent Department for Education statistics show that the number of apprenticeship applications far outstrip the number of apprenticeship vacancies.
For example, between Aug 2015/16 there were a total of 1,656,680 applications for 211,380 vacancies a ratio of about 8 to 1 – about half of these were from 17-18 year olds. Three quarters of vacancies were for Intermediate (GCSE level) positions. The figures do not allow us to calculate the number of young people wanting apprenticeships because they will include multi applications, but they do reflect a continued shortage of opportunities. The largest number of vacancies are in the Business, Administration and Law category – well over a third. In comparison, there were just over 8000 vacancies in Construction ( a sector considered to be suffering from skill shortages) and 30 000 in engineering and manufacturing, a 20% increase on the previous year.
These totals are based on ‘on-line’ vacancies only and do not include the large number of (mainly low-level) apprenticeships created by regrading existing existing workers, allowing employers to qualify for funding