Sandwell Council has won top national recognition for its much-praised work with apprenticeships and school leavers.
The council was Highly Commended in the Macro Employer of the Year in the Regional Finals of the National Apprenticeship Awards.
They received the award in a competition which had 1,200 applicants, including some of the biggest names in local government and commerce.
The award recognises the vital support given to apprentices, such as on-going mentoring, support at the end of apprenticeships to progress and engaging with them to get full feed back on their experiences.
The council offers in excess of 50 apprenticeship qualifications for new starters and existing staff wanting to get further qualifications, and has had 364 apprenticeship starts since May 2017 as part of its apprenticeship levy scheme.
Councillor Danny Millard, cabinet member for skills and employment, said:
“This is a fantastic achievement for the council and especially for the successful partnership between our Employment and Skills and Learning and Development teams.
“Apprentices are helping us to build a more diverse workforce and to offer a range of opportunities for those looking to start or change their careers.”
Council Millard said that this highly-coveted award comes on top of the council being a finalist in the School Leaver Awards and a place in the national Top 100 employers for school-leavers.
“On top of that the council are also finalists in the Investors in People for the best apprenticeships programme next month,” he added.