Figures released today show that there were 30.98 million people in work in the March-to-May quarter, 67,000 down from the previous quarter and the first fall since April 2013.

The push towards apprenticeships may account, in part, for the most recent drop. By design, apprenticeships provide only short term, low-paid work. At the expiry of an apprenticeship there is no obligation on the employer to continue to pay the apprentice at or above the minimum wage. With the introduction of the enhanced national living wage, the employer may be even more hamstrung, especially if they are a small business or start-up without financial stability.

There may be jobs out there, but if young workers are not trained and skilled in available and sustainable roles in which they can continue to develop, unemployment figures will continue to rise. All eyes will be on the next quarter when the government will be put to task should job security and economic recovery not continue.