by Richard Buckley, Editor, Business Eye

Rutledge Training has launched a major apprenticeship drive aimed at encouraging new talent into the local automotive industry. The new ApprenticeshipsNI programme funded by the Department of the Economy, supported by Toyota (GB) and The Toyota and Lexus Academy is now live, offering apprenticeships throughout the Toyota network of car dealerships in Northern Ireland.


These fully-funded apprenticeships will span the areas of retail, customer service, IT, digital marketing, business administration, team leadership and management.

Rutledge, an experienced provider of recruitment and training services, was selected by Toyota to help identify and nurture talent that will ultimately strengthen their presence in Northern Ireland.

“Toyota’s commitment to talent development is to be commended,” said Tracey Eisen, Group Operations Director with Rutledge. “We are delighted to be working in close partnership to deliver this brilliant new programme. Apprentices taking part will have first class support and first-hand industry insight. They will be learning and earning with access to the latest technology and the highest level of customer service training.

“Equally, companies embracing apprenticeships, as Toyota have, benefit greatly. The process allows them to focus on developing specific skills or roles, it helps them encourage a diverse and motivated workforce, and it empowers their team to grow and succeed.

“Apprenticeships are also proven to enhance productivity and cultivate loyalty amongst employees. Through this collaboration, Rutledge and Toyota are not only supporting individual career growth, but also contributing to the vitality of the automotive industry and the wider economy here in Northern Ireland. We’re very pleased to have these positions now open for application,” Tracey Eisen said.

Speaking about the new Northern Ireland-wide apprenticeship programme, Carolyn Bundey, Strategic Projects, The Academy, Toyota GB said: “At Toyota and Lexus, we fully support people reaching their full potential. We recognise the power of education and personal development to create the best environment for everyone to thrive and are excited to launch this valuable partnership with Rutledge. We look forward to it bringing in new sources of talent, opening up new learning and employment opportunities for people in Northern Ireland, and supporting in closing the skills gap.”

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Launching the scheme are L-R Sandy Fleming, Performance Manager; Sian Dodds, Talent Programme Manager - both Toyota (GB) Ltd and Tracey Eisen, Group Operations Director, Rutledge

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