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Business recruitment and training support

Looking for recruitment or training support? Find expert advice on recruiting staff, including apprentices, graduates and people with disabilities, plus upskilling your staff.

Whether you're looking for advice on recruitment, apprenticeships or training your employees, the following information offers local help and support to make it easier to find the right people and provide the right training for you and your company.

Lancashire Skills and Employment Hub

Lancashire Skills and Employment Hub offer skills and employment support including help upskilling your staff, free training needs analysis, subsidised/funded training, recruitment support to help you find the right people and comprehensive advice around taking on and developing apprentices.

They have also produced the Lancashire Employer Guide to Skills Support. This is a useful reference guide to the funded skills support projects available, so you can decide which projects are best suited to your business.   

Recruiting and employing graduates            

The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has a free to use jobs portal to recruit students on a placement, graduate role or part time casual jobs basis. They also provide an online e-portfolio system 'Spark of Talent', which showcases some of the Universities freshest and most creative talent.

For details visit UCLan - recruit our students

Recruiting and employing people with disabilities

Lancashire County Council employment support services offer extensive advice for employing people with disabilities, including matching the right person to your vacancy, developing a unique support and advice package and providing training on a range of disability related topics.

For details visit Lancashire County Council - help recruiting and employing disabled people.

Disability Confident 

The Government's Disability Confident scheme supports employers to make the most of the talents disabled people can bring to your workplace.

Disability Confident helps businesses:

  • draw from the widest possible pool of talent
  • secure and retain high quality staff who are skilled, loyal and hard working
  • save time and money on the costs of recruitment and training by reducing staff turnover
  • keep valuable skills and experience
  • reduce the levels and costs of sickness absences
  • improve employee morale and commitment by demonstrating that they treat all employees fairly

Employers can sign up to the Disability Confident scheme by visiting GOV.UK - how to sign up to the Disability Confident employer scheme


Apprenticeships are suitable for anyone over 16 and provide a valuable pathway to develop the right staff, your way. Whether you are recruiting new talent into the business or developing existing staff, apprenticeships enable you to grow your own talent, reduce staff turnover and give your business the skills it needs to succeed.

To find out how apprenticeships could work for you visit GOV.UK - employing an apprentice.

Shared Apprenticeship Scheme - Construction

The Shared Apprenticeship Scheme has been set up to help employers in the construction industry who want to support the development of skills while working on regional contracts, but are not in a position to offer a full term apprenticeship, and who wish to support training the future workforce. In Lancashire, for those interested in a career in construction there is a scheme run by Calico - Constructing the Future. 

CITB New Entrant Support Team (NEST) for Construction

The CITB is the industry training board  for the construction sector to help the construction industry attract talent and to support skills development. If you're looking to expand your team and bring an apprentice into your business, the CITB - New Entrant Support Team (NEST) is there to help you, and employers, successfully navigate the pathway to hiring an apprentice.

This hands-on, free support covers areas such as recruitment, help with the paperwork, accessing grants and funding, and ongoing mentoring throughout the apprenticeship. Get in touch with your local New Entrant Employer Support Advisor by emailing newentrant.team@citb.co.uk.

Local apprentice support

UCLan's - Apprenticeship Matching Service offers a free specialist recruitment package for employers looking to take on a Degree Apprentice.

The Lancashire Work-Based Learning Executive Forum provides useful guidance on apprenticeships, funding, details of training providers and other work-based training opportunities.

The Lancashire Levy Transfer Network (LLTN)is where an employer who pays the Apprenticeship Levy and has unspent funds, agrees to support another employer to pay for Apprenticeship training. The Lancashire Levy Transfer Network (LLTN) is an impartial and free service that matches businesses wanting to transfer unused Apprenticeship Levy funds to businesses seeking support to fund the costs of Apprenticeship training for their employees.

Preston College - employers can support businesses with training, business courses and apprenticeships.

The University of Central Lancashire - degree apprenticeships can help you develop your workforce including a new range of Degree Apprenticeships.

Lancashire Skills and Employment Hub - employers apprenticeship toolkit provides an Employers' Apprenticeship Toolkit (2022) to help local businesses get to grips with the issues surrounding taking on and developing apprentices. Or check out the Lancashire Skills Pledge, where knowledgeable professionals can contact you to discuss how apprenticeships will benefit your business.

Apprenticeship Grant Update

A £3,000 grant for SMEs in Lancashire who start an apprenticeship for those under the age of twenty-five. Business must be located in Lancashire and be a Small and Medium enterprises (less than £50m revenue and fewer than 250 employees). Delivered by Lancashire County Council. For further information visit Lancashire Skills Hub.

Training and skills

Training and upskilling your workforce is important for keeping skills fresh and up to date with the latest technologies and ways of working. It can also raise retention, boost morale and improve performance amongst staff.

Skills Bootcamps in Lancashire

Skills Bootcamps in Lancashire are intensive and flexible courses of up to 16 weeks, giving people the opportunity to gain in-demand sector specific skills with a guaranteed job interview upon completion. The latest and upcoming courses cover construction, defence, digital, creative and technology, green skills, healthcare, HGV and logistics. Fully-funded for individuals aged 19 and over living in Lancashire (some eligibility criteria). Employers can ease recruitment challenges by employing a Skills Bootcamp graduate. 

For more information, please email the Skills Bootcamps team LancsSkillsHub@lancashirelep.co.uk and they will match you to a suitable Skills Bootcamp training partner. Employers can also upskill their existing staff with just a modest contribution - 10% for SMEs and 30% for larger employers.

Government training for green jobs

The Government has announced almost 9,000 training courses will be run across England for heat pump and energy efficiency installers. Courses will be free or heavily subsidised and provide retraining opportunities for people already working in or looking to start roles in the green energy sector.  For details of local training providers visit GOV.UK - Home Decarbonisation Skills Training Competition: successful projects.

Lancashire Local Skills Improvement Plan (LSIP)

Lancashire's Local Skills Improvement Plan is part of the government's Skills Accelerator, which aims to reshape the technical skills system to better support the needs of the local labour market, businesses and the wider economy.  Businesses can have their say on local skills and recruitment needs, take part in surveys/focus groups and much more. You can also keep in touch with the free LSIP APP.

Local training and skills support

Lancashire Skills and Employment Hub - train an apprentice offers advice on skilling up your teams through apprenticeship funding which can be used for any age group to create the workforce you need.

Lancashire Digital Skills Partnership can signpost you to free Digital Skills training and opportunities. Explore information on freely available digital tools and training which can support the residents and businesses of Lancashire to thrive. Find out how you can upskill to get a job or change your career - topics range from basic IT skills to coding and big data.

Skills for Work - Preston- Lancashire Skills and Employment Hub have brought together information about support that can help you get a job and if you are employed there is help for you to learn new skills.

Coming soon, a range of skills support for businesses and residents funded by Preston's UK Shared Prosperity Funding.