Employing an apprentice is an opportunity to invest in your workforce and grow your business – with employers in Northampton urged to reconsider their recruitment policy.

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 Businesses across the county attended a workshop staged by Northampton College to help explain the new Apprenticeship Levy, which comes into force next week.

Employers with an annual pay bill of more than £3million will be required to pay a levy of 0.5 per cent that will fund apprenticeships.

The aim of the levy is to increase the investment in training by UK employers through apprenticeships, making it a long-term solution to support growth and commitment from businesses.

James Whybrow, assistant principal of Northampton College, said: “Getting apprentices involved in your company can revolutionise the business. It gives you the opportunity to shape your workforce for the future and really ingrain people in your company’s culture.

“By investing in people and giving them the chance to progress through the ranks you are encouraging loyalty and promoting innovation.

“The new Apprenticeship Levy is there to benefit companies both large and small, it gives employers the chance to create new jobs and enjoy the long-term benefits of an engaged and enthusiastic workforce.”

A class of Level 3 Art and Design students from Northampton College have created a series of paintings and drawings which they have donated to Northampton General Hospital.

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The spring-inspired artwork will brighten up the walls of waiting rooms so families can have something visually appealing to look at during their visits.

Each painting shows a different type of spring flower in a variety of different styles using different materials such as paint, pastel, pen and ink.

Northampton College has teamed up with top businesses experts and The University of Northampton to host a free workshop for local employers to learn about the new Apprenticeship Levy.

1037 50536The levy, which comes into effect on 6 April 2017, requires all UK employers with a pay bill of over £3 million each year to invest in apprenticeships.

With first payments due to be taken through the PAYE system in May, Northamptonshire employers will have chance to find out exactly how the levy will affect their business during the College’s workshop at John Lewis’ Grange Park depot on Thursday, 30 March.

Northampton College has partnered with levy-payer John Lewis, accountancy specialists Grant Thornton, legal experts Howes Percival, and The University of Northampton to stage the event, which will include a number of keynote speakers and a question and answers session.

Oil painting artist Michael Piper is putting his own stamp on the new multi-million pound Northampton College Daventry Campus, joining students, staff and local businesses to help create a giant commemorative mural.

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The mural, which will be unveiled later this year, will be made up of hundreds of individually designed tiles, and Michael has been using his own creative talent to craft a tile of his own design.

Visiting the new campus, the local artist took the opportunity to spend time with art students, offering career and technique advice.

Young people looking for the chance to ‘earn while they learn’ can pick up tips from employers and find out more about apprenticeships available with Northampton College.

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A total of 1,136 students successfully completed an apprenticeship with Northampton College in 2015-16 and employers such as Opus Energy and Novacroft will be on hand at the National Apprenticeship Show in Milton Keynes next week to explain more about how their apprentices are working their way up the career ladder.

Northampton College is a headline sponsor of the show and will be giving all those attending the opportunity to discover the benefits of signing up for an apprenticeship, combining traditional classroom-style learning with ‘on-the-job’ workplace training.