As part of the EU Social Dialogue programme, European social partners have undertaken separate projects on apprenticeships focusing on the cost-effectiveness of apprenticeship schemes (employers) and a European quality framework for apprenticeships (trade unions).
The project outcomes were presented in a joint conference on 26-27 May in Brussels.
The trade unions' contribution is a report and set of quality criteria on apprenticeship:
The employers' contribution is an analyses on cost-effectiveness in apprenticeship:
The objective of the conference was to build a shared vision on apprenticeships and commit to further initiatives.
"During this conference, we have heard employers and trade unionists talking almost the same language on apprenticeships” said Thiebaut Weber, confederal secretary of ETUC the event. “Companies that have successful stories on apprenticeship are those where unions have their say, where apprentices are not cheap labor, but have access to quality training and receive remuneration for this participation. Apprenticeships work when it's part of a long-term strategy on skills. These first elements of a shared vision on apprenticeships are good basis to continue our work to boost apprenticeships in Europe."
The social partners agreed a joint statement, in which they call for a debate with the European institutions and the Member States on joint actions for supporting the provision, effectiveness and quality of apprenticeships and to improve apprenticeships across Europe.
Moreover, European social partners, will explore how to achieve higher levels of mobility of apprentices across Europe.