Apprenticeship training works for employers | National Union of Public and General Employees

Apprenticeship training works for employers

A 2009 study shows that employers receive, on average, a benefit of $1.47 for every $1 invested in apprenticeship training, up 9 cents since the 2006 pilot study.

 OTTAWA – The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum-Forum canadien sur l’apprentissage (CAF-FCA) has completed a follow-up study, “It pays to hire an apprentice: Calculating the Return on Training Investment for Employers in Canada,” and the results are positive for employers!

Over 1,000 employers representing 16 trades from across every region were consulted and the analysis shows a significant return for employers right across the country!

Investing in apprenticeship makes good business sense!

CAF-FCA completed a 2006 landmark pilot study, Building a Skilled Workforce for a Strong Bottom Line that showed a positive net return on apprenticeship training. This current study looked at various regions, trades and business sizes. The results showed consistent and increased benefits for all.

Industry was a driving force behind CAF-FCA doing the follow-up study. Michael Atkinson, President of the Canadian Construction Association, states "CAF-FCA's work in this area reinforces what many employers have discovered for themselves. The very need for such a study, however, suggests that there are still too many employers out there who do not do their part to train and develop their future workforce and who are missing out on the tremendous benefits employing apprentices can provide them."

It is hoped the results of the study will encourage more employers to invest in apprenticeship. As Dan Mott from Mott Electric says, “Apprenticeship supports the bottom line. I hope my colleagues will consider apprenticeship as a viable option after learning about the results. I know from my experience it definitely pays to invest.”

Apprenticeship training results in benefits

In the current economic climate, maximizing business performance is crucial. Apprenticeship training is working for employers right across Canada. Employers who participated in the study indicated that apprenticeship training results in benefits for journey-persons, reduced risk of skill shortages, greater overall productivity, better relations with customers, fewer mistakes and better health and safety performance.

According to Bob Blakely, Director of the Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO, Canadian Office, “This study provides information that is essential to the development of a national construction workforce. Apprentices are the future of construction and it is invaluable to work with employers and other stakeholders to develop lasting training programs that operate efficiently, effectively and ultimately, programs that graduate skilled people. The business case has never been stronger to develop programs that build capacity. ”

CAF-FCA encourages employers to invest in an apprentice today. Youth, parents, and educators are also encouraged to explore information on the skilled trades. Investment in apprenticeship training provides opportunities for everyone!


The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE

Additional Information

The CAF-FCA is a not-for-profit, multi-partite organization bringing together the key constituents within the apprenticeship community through research, discussion and promotion. Visit to find out more about the study and how to get started in the exciting potential of apprenticeship training for all of Canada!

Report: It Pays to Hire an Apprentice

Occupational Groups: