The IT Skills Academy has created a further 135 apprenticeships, while BAE systems has also taken on over 100 paid interns.

A partnership between the National Skills Academy for IT, training provider NITP and BT, have created 135 new positions to add to the 300 already created since October 2012.

Nearly 80% of the new apprentices’ employers are SMEs, and over 70% of them have not recruited an apprentice before. The IT Skills Academy has also launched a free guide for employers to "demystify the process of hiring an IT apprentice". It is available online, while print copies have been sent to businesses across England.

Patrick Beasley, apprenticeships project director at the National Skills Academy for IT, said: “Many employers aren’t aware that IT apprenticeships exist or think it’ll be too complex to hire one. We’re already starting to change that perception through our partnership with BT and NITP and we aim to continue via this new guide.”

The 135 new apprentices will receive training that is quality-assured by BT and delivered by NITP at its further education colleges in 11 English towns and cities.

In addition, this summer over 100 undergraduates are receiving training and gaining a recognised qualification at BAE Systems in the UK as part of the company's first ever paid summer internship scheme.

Each intern will be paid £4,200 during their three month internship, as well as receiving an externally recognised certificate from EAL (Excellence, Achievement & Learning), the nationally recognised industry specialist awarding organisation.

Over the 12-week period, the students have the opportunity to work at one of 10 different BAE Systems sites in a variety of areas, ranging from engineering to business development and project management to procurement.

Of the 104 interns taken on this summer, 39 have joined the BAE Systems cyber security arm Detica, across sites in Guildford, Gloucester and London. Twenty-five interns have also been allocated to the military air and information business in Warton, and 13 have research and technology placements at sites in Chelmsford and Filton.

As well as providing candidates with experience, the internship offers the possibility of employment with BAE Systems on graduation. Individuals who demonstrate "outstanding performance" on the internship will not have to complete all the stages of the recruitment process should they wish to join the company upon graduation.

Ayesha Godigamuwe, early careers advisor at BAE Systems, said: “Our scheme provides undergraduates with an invaluable opportunity to actually get paid to learn and develop core skills, as well as ensuring that BAE Systems competes for the very best talent in the market."

The BAE application process for opportunities in 2014 will open this September.