EMPLOYERS in Huddersfield have been urged to take up subsidies worth thousands of pounds for staff training.
Companies were given details of “recession-busting” funding to improve the skills of their staff at an event staged at Huddersfield’s Galpharm Stadium.
Specialist skills brokers provided details of funding to support staff on National Vocational Qualifications and Apprenticeships – as well as £1,000 grants for leadership and management training.
Bosses from vehicle management company FMG Support were among firms highlighting how investment in training had benefited their business.
The company, based at St Andrew’s Road, Bradley Mills, secured a £7m investment from funding group Spirit Capital in March last year and since then has won heavyweight contracts with Lloyds TSB Autolease and the Highways Agency.
Delegates to the breakfast-time Kirklees Skills Employer Event were also urged to sign the Skills Pledge, part of a national campaign run by the Learning and Skills Council, to show their commitment to staff training and development.
Twenty-five Kirklees firms have already signed up to the Skills Pledge before yesterday’s event.
Kirklees Council has joined forces with regional development agency Yorkshire Forward, the LSC, skills brokers and training providers to offer subsidies and help firms get the skilled staff they need to compete in world markets.
Council leader Clr Mehboob Khan and David Hodges, LSC Yorkshire’s regional director of skills, were among those backing the event.
Clr Christine Stanfield, Kirklees Council Cabinet member responsible for regeneration, environment and transport, said: “Improving skill levels is a high priority for Kirklees Council and our partners in the district.
“I welcome the launch of a campaign to encourage local employers to invest in their staff.
“By working with a skills broker, businesses can create a tailored package of training and receive guidance and help in securing funding.
“This not only enables them to continue with training despite the economic downturn, but also cuts down on administration researching and organising training, which can often by a barrier.”
A Kirklees spokesman said: “The council is working towards increasing the skill levels of residents in order to meet the needs of the job market.
“A range of support to develop the skills of staff is available to employers in Kirklees – with some specific to different business sectors.
“Investing in skills and training increases business productivity and can strengthen a company, particularly in the current economic climate.
“By subsidising training and offering extra levels of support, more businesses will be able to take advantage of what is open to them and get the most out of it.”