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Ottawa, Ontario -- September 24, 2014 -- There is a business case that supports investment by skilled trades employers in essential skills training, according to a report released by the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum – Forum canadien sur l’apprentissage (CAF-FCA).

The first study of its kind in Canada, CAF-FCA conducted a national survey with skilled trades employers to investigate participation in essential skills training and the corresponding return on investment. Respondents represented a variety of regions, business sizes and trades.
“Training associated with adapting to new work processes, problem-solving and digital skills were identified by employers as vital for enhancing productivity in the skilled trades workplace,” says Sarah Watts-Rynard, Executive Director of the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum. “This study shows a correlation between training and productivity based on the practical measures used by employers.”
Employers spoke to the impact of training on increased bill-out and work rates, customer retention, new process innovation and facilitation of other training.
Findings show that 45 per cent of employers provided essential skills training to their tradespeople. Employers surveyed invested a median of $1,125 per learner and realized a total benefit of $4,071, supporting the business case for essential skills training. For every dollar invested, employers observed a return of $3.08.
The Business Case for Essential Skills Training in the Skilled Trades shares insights into employer experiences, participation levels, training content, and related costs and benefits. It showcases how employers are benefiting from the support of government, union and non-profit training providers, as well as the extent to which training is conducted with internal resources, providing a more complete picture of workplace training in Canada’s skilled trades community.

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