Do you have a skills gap in your business? Do the people you want to hire need some extra training and experience to meet the demands of the job? Or does a current employee wish to refresh their skills to move up the promotion ladder? If so, then you might want to consider some of the ways that you can find and implement training programmes for your business.

There is a growing problem in UK businesses and organisations: many academic high-flying candidates applying for jobs have the right qualifications and education, but they lack the fundamental skills required to do the job. There are an estimated 17 million highly skilled jobs in the UK, but only 14 million highly skilled workers.

Many people in their 30’s, 40’s and 50’s realise that it is never too late to refresh your career and find more satisfaction at work. The average person will now have at least 15 jobs in their lifetime! Some of these candidates might be interested in roles they do not necessarily have experience in, but they do have many years of work experience in other roles.

There are lots of benefits to hiring a career-change candidate; for example, they are usually relocating to a role they feel more passionate and engaged in, and they can bring with them the perspective gained from working in other sectors. It is worth investing in the training a career-change candidate might need to reinject some life into your business and begin to close the ever-growing skills gap.

You might be looking for training support for an employee who already works for you, but wants to progress in their career, or wants to gain the qualifications which are now needed for the job. Or on the other hand, you might be looking to implement a training procedure for recruits, which would enable you to take on career-change candidates with the assurance that they will meet the right skills level.

Some of your best options for finding training include:

Adult Apprenticeships and Internships

You are never too old to do an adult apprenticeship or internship. As an employer, this can be a great way to support your staff to train for new skills whilst working on the job. Look at our dedicated, up-to-date page on funding for more information on how you can save by retraining your staff.


Mentoring isn’t just beneficial for people starting in their careers, such as students and graduates. If you want to take on a career change candidate, who has plenty of future potential, but lacks some of the skills and knowledge of how that role works, why not pair them with a more experienced colleague who they can shadow. This is beneficial for both the mentor and the mentee, as the mentor gets to refresh their knowledge of the job, and the mentee learns first-hand what the role looks like.

Part-Time Study

In 2011/2012 half a million people did part-time courses at university, many of these would have been mature students returning to education and balancing studying with their career. However, between 2013 and 2019 there has been a growing decline in the number of students over 30 taking courses at universities. Many people now don’t have the time to balance work and studying and cannot afford only to work part-time.

As an employer, you can change this. By supporting your staff into a part-time study, you are investing in the future of your business. You are ensuring that your team have the most up to date knowledge and education to do the best job they can. Funding, flexible working and time-off are some of the best ways to support you can support part-time study.

For more information on employing career change candidates, visit our webpage on the benefits.

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