Defence giant BAE Systems to nearly double apprentice hiring spree next year
BAE Systems, one of the UK’s biggest defence companies, is set to nearly double its hiring spree next year.
The FTSE defence firm is planning to hire more than 2,600 graduates and apprentices next year, across cybersecurity, software development, aerospace engineering, accountancy and human resources.
Although BAE typically invests around £100m annually in education, skills and early careers activities in Britain, the defence firm has benefited financially from ongoing geopolitical tensions and the war in Ukraine, having secured a £4.2bn contract from the British government just weeks ago.
Most roles are expected to be based in the north of England, although there will be opportunities across the south of England, Scotland and Wales, the company announced on Sunday.
Tania Gandamihardja, group director of human resources at BAE, said: “Providing high-quality early careers programmes gives young people a route into long-term employment and helps recruit the talent we need to deliver on vital national defence and security programmes, such as the Tempest next-generation combat aircraft and Dreadnought nuclear submarines.”
She added that with the present economic challenges, it was essential for businesses to “invest in the next generation”.
Robert Halfon, minister for skills, apprenticeships and higher education, added that “Apprenticeships are the catalyst to boosting the economy, building a skills nation and extending the ladder of opportunity to all.”
The UK has been wrestling with a shortage of STEM skills for several years, with defence, aerospace and pharmaceutical sectors being squeezed for talent.
The UK Commission for Employment and Skills revealed earlier this year that 43 per cent of STEM vacancies were hard to fill due to a shortage of applicants, leaving tech skills in even higher demand.
About 95 per cent of apprentice trainees complete their apprenticeships with BAE and go on to secure full-time employment with the company, with starting salaries ranging from £15,000 to £34,000.