CoTrain is an industry partnership designed to increase the number of young people completing apprenticeships across the South East.

CoTrain is a Shared Apprenticeship Scheme working in partnership and co-funded by CITB (Construction Industry Training Board). We offer flexible arrangements that overcome many of the challenges the industry faces when considering the ‘traditional’ apprenticeship route.

CoTrain can help contractors fulfil their obligations to provide an apprenticeship placement on shorter-term contracts, where they are unable to support a 'traditional' full-time apprenticeship.

CoTrain works with local authorities, tier 1 contractors and the supply chain to bring young people into the sector. Since 2015, CoTrain has helped its principal contractors partners and supply chain to deliver their social value targets by facilitating and managing apprenticeship training and employment placements on projects on their behalf across the South East.

We recruit, employ, and deal with college and qualifications; while on-site training is shared across a number of contractors.

We are proud Members of FIS, the trade body of the £10 billion fit-out, finishes and interiors sector. FIS is a not-for-profit community that represents specialists in all aspects of the interior fit-out and finishes sector.

We are part of BESAS (Built Environment Shared Apprenticeship Service Limited), a collaborative initiative that brings together the expertise and commitment of EN:Able Futures, TrAC, CoTrain, Shared Apprenticeships and Evolve – shared apprenticeship schemes for the built environment covering the whole of England.

Our Shared Apprenticeship Service is a national initiative co-funded by CITB that has been designed specifically to address some of the challenges faced by the construction sector, when the need to meet training targets and the desire to employ apprentices, conflicts with project lead times, with shorter term contracts/developments unable to support the ‘traditional’ apprenticeship route (typically requiring single employment for 24 months).

Employment and Skills Plans (ESPs) are increasingly becoming a familiar aspect of section 106 planning conditions and public sector frameworks such as the Southern Construction Framework (SCF)  which encourages social value and requires contractors to engage local people in employment and training on developments; and in particular young apprentices, playing a vital role in addressing the skills gaps and helping to bring new talent into the sector.

A shared apprentice can work with a number of contractors who will ‘host’ their apprenticeship placements, and on a number of projects (minimum of 13 weeks per placement) until they complete their training, offering contractors the help they need and only when they need it.

Apprentices should see no difference in their training being a shared apprentice and in fact will benefit from the wide range of professional people they will work with.

Since 2015, CoTrain has helped its principal contractor partners and their supply chain to deliver almost £1m of social value by facilitating and managing apprenticeship training and employment placements on projects on their behalf across the South East.

With ever increasing importance placed upon social value, ‘Employment & Skills Plans’ are used to set key performance objectives on projects, around adding ‘social value’ - one of which is focused on providing ‘local’ employment and apprenticeship training ... but how can this be achieved on shorter term contracts?

Find out how CoTrain can help you to win more business and deliver on social value here How CoTrain can help social value - September 2023.pdf

Since 2013, CoTrain (a Programme delivered by SECBE, part of the Constructing Excellence network) have supported over 250 apprentices and sites, saved companies’ resources in managing apprentices, and helped them meet their social value objectives.

Let us know about the skills your company needs. We are here to help you in recruiting and managing apprentices so that your full focus can be directed towards delivering your projects successfully:

Contact Mark Pope mark@secbe.org.uk |07483 172916

Contact Molly Albone molly@secbe.org.uk | 07853 282 490

Tel: 01189 207 209

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