Dulux Academy is celebrating this year’s National Apprenticeship Week (7th – 13th February) by launching a new Apprentice Season Ticket, the first of several new initiatives that are being created to attract, develop, and retain new entrants to the industry.
The labour shortage has been well documented over the years and with more recent challenges associated with Brexit and the pandemic, the industry is now facing a crisis. Labour shortage is the number one concern for decorators and contractors, with research showing that new entrants to the industry are in decline. The trade is also contending with an ageing workforce, with the average age of a UK decorator being 50 and a total of 66% of decorators set to retire in the next 10 years. At the same time, there remains a distinct lack of diversity within appliers, with women making up just 20%.
Dulux Academy is dedicated to developing skills, knowledge and confidence at every stage of a decorator’s career with over 10,000 trade professionals trained since its launch in 2016. Plans for the next five years centre on doubling this number and developing a suite of activities that aim to grow and support the workforce of the future.
The theme of ‘Build the Future’ for this year’s National Apprenticeship Week provides the perfect backdrop for the launch of the Dulux Academy Apprentice Season Ticket, an incentive designed to supplement and enhance the formal learning and site-based skills experience apprentices undertake.
The Season Ticket opens up a range of learning solutions designed to suit every style. This includes attendance at face-to-face Dulux Academy courses at venues across the UK; access to an online learning Hub; exclusive events and activities; monthly updates to support the curriculum; online subject clinics; and a network for peer-to-peer advice and support. Dulux Academy will also offer a number of fun incentives for Season Ticket holders to celebrate the achievements and successes of all those involved.
The Season Ticket is open to all painting and decorating apprentices that are enrolled at a college or with a learning provider and has an annual fee of £200+VAT. Apprentices will need to enrol via their employer. More information about the Season Ticket can be found here.
As well as helping those starting out in their careers, Dulux Academy is supporting professional decorators taking on apprentices with the launch of a new how-to guide. The guide offers practical information for those who want to know more about what’s involved in taking on an apprentice. This includes information on funding available and best practice advice and comments from those that have benefitted from having an apprentice, such as decorator Mike Poole, who has mentored 15 apprentices over the last 17 years and was voted Apprentice Mentor of the Year at the 2021 Dulux Select Decorators Awards.
Mike said; “We have helped train a mix of students – male, female, young, mature and those with additional needs – and we welcome anyone who’s looking to gain work experience. We’ve been supporting our two current apprentices, Max and Oscar, as they complete their college courses, helping them to learn practical skills such as painting and sanding and how to run a business. Working with young people gives me purpose and it’s really satisfying to see them learn and grow – and it helps keep me young too.”
Trade professionals can download a free copy of the Dulux Academy Guide to growing your business with apprenticeships by clicking the link here.
Vickie Mather, Dulux Academy Lead at AkzoNobel, said; “With an ageing workforce and ongoing challenges around encouraging young people to join the industry, it’s vital that we do everything we can to attract new joiners and develop their skills to help build the next generation of painting and decorating professionals.
“Our ambition at Dulux Academy is to provide painters and decorators with accessible training through every stage of their career. This includes those making their start in the industry, which is why we have launched our latest suite of activities to celebrate National Apprenticeship Week. This will provide new opportunities for apprentices to develop specialist skills through our industry-leading training courses that will supplement their formal qualifications and on-site learning, while also offering additional support to employers looking to take on their own apprentices.”
Established in 2016, Dulux Academy is the home of decorating excellence that raises industry standards, championing the trade into the future. Since launch, the Academy has welcomed over 8,000 course attendees through its doors, with a further 3,000 benefiting from Academy Live online training sessions.
For more information, visit: www.duluxacademy.co.uk.