Looking to address the current skills and labour shortage in the growing freight distribution and logistics industry that is a vital contributor to the Irish economy is a new Logistics Associate Apprenticeship.
The Logistics Associate Apprenticeship is a Level 6 Higher Certificate in Logistics. It’s the first non-craft apprenticeship to be offered by Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) and the first of the industry-led programmes to be delivered by DIT School of Management. The announcement of the new Logistics Associate programme really demonstrates what industry can achieve when working collaboratively. The consortium of businesses and professional bodies supporting the programme– which includes Freight Transport Associate Ireland (FTAI), The Irish International Freight Association (IIFA), Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT), The Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers Ireland, IPICS, The Supply Chain Management Institute and an impressive list of employers – are committed to delivering a meaningful, active programme which will deliver the skilled young people which the Irish logistics industry needs to keep moving.
The content of the apprenticeship was approved for development by the Minister for Education Richard Bruton, TD on 8 December 2017 and, thanks to the efforts of all the businesses and industry bodies concerned, the programme has been validated within six months, an unprecedented achievement. The “earn as you learn” apprenticeship and traineeship plan was launched by Government in 2016, and offers career options to school leavers and mature students who prefer paid on-the-job training, rather than a full time educational solution.
By 2020, the Government plans to have 72 apprenticeship programmes in operation (currently there are 25 with 11 new validated programmes) and 9,000 registrations for apprentices per annum.
The new Apprenticeship will be overseen by the National Apprenticeship Council, while the further education and training authority SOLAS is the lead agency responsible for apprenticeship on behalf of Government, working in close partnership with the Higher Education Authority and Quality and Qualifications Ireland, as well as industry education and training providers across further and higher education. SOLAS’ responsibility includes maintenance of a national register of employers approved to take on apprentices and a national register of apprentices.
The guidance for employers is to support Apprenticeship programmes (which must be industry led) by mapping positions and people into positions that fit in with available apprenticeships. Employers are encouraged to share their requirements with key stakeholders including SOLAS and trade associations. Schools and guidance councillors can link in with key stakeholders in the industry to obtain guidance and knowledge of an industry that can then be shared with students. Apprenticeships are a great opportunity and offer viable solutions to help add value and direction for the participant. Apprenticeships help form a culture of progression within industry that will ultimately result in a better skilled workforce.