Apprenticeships will be made available to all employees at McDonald's, the fast food giant announced today.
The company aims to provide apprenticeships to up to 6,000 of its 72,000 UK workforce this year, and then up to 10,000 per year from 2010, giving staff the opportunity to gain a nationally-recognised qualification equivalent to five GCSEs grade A*-C.
Following a successful trial, McDonald's is offering the Level 2 Apprenticeship in Multi-Skilled Hospitality, which recognises job-specific skills acquired through workplace training, combined with GCSE-equivalent Maths and English.
The company will be subject to Ofsted inspections and will be required to meet the same standards and criteria as any school and college, while its apprenticeships will be accredited by awarding body City & Guilds.
David Fairhurst, chief people officer at McDonald's UK, said: "In these challenging economic times, it is more important than ever for employers to invest in their staff.
The announcement was welcomed by Brian Wisdom, chief executive of People 1st, the Sector Skills Council for hospitality.
"We fully endorse the McDonald's apprenticeship strategy which offers a nationally recognised qualification that will be valued by other employers in the industry, and offers their staff a significant investment in their career development," he said.
By Daniel Thomas
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