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Skills Boost For Engineering SMEs

Govt Announces Funding Package For Skills Training


SMEs in the engineering sector are now able to apply for government skills funding to help equip them for growth.
Companies with fewer than 250 employees are eligible to apply for a share of the first £2.5m of a £10m match funding pot to develop company-specific training.
It is part of a £30m programme that will see the government joining forces with employers to invest in engineering skills, in response to a review of the sector published in 2013.
The minimum threshold for the funding, which companies need to match with their own money to obtain, has been reduced from £40,000 to £10,000. Additionally, companies will have the option to include staff wage costs as part of the cost of the project.
"This makes the scheme far more accessible and reflects more realistically the amount many smaller companies may be able to invest in skills and training," said Tim Thomas, Head of Skills and Employment Policy at the Engineering Employers' Federation.

Expert Opinion
It is welcome to see steps taken to support small businesses in the engineering sector, giving them access to vital funding which will help them to develop their talent base and the skills that they have at their disposal.

"Small businesses are so often seen as the lifeblood of so many sectors, but they do need help if they are to compete with larger rivals. Schemes such as this give them the chance to push ahead with their plans for the future and improve their offerings."
Fergal Dowling, Partner

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