Many companies - especially larger firms - are keen to invest in key employees or potential new recruits - perhaps through apprenticeships - to improve their skills and knowledge so that their value to the company is enhanced. Thus company training schemes are often a kind of win:win arrangement, with benefit for both parties.
If you are not sure whether your employer offers such schemes, why not enquire? And if they don't, why not suggest that they should do so?
There are significant benefits for sponsoring companies who support the training of their staff. But from the employee's point of view it's always worth being clear from the start whether the company requires participating staff members to remain in their employee for a particular length of time after the training finishes.
Here are some useful links which provide more information about sponsorship for training:
National Careers Service - Getting Training at Work
The National Skills Academy for Retail - Scholarships
National Apprenticeship Service
Another aspect of sponsorship in relation to training is the sponsorship by firms of awards which recognise
excellence in training schemes.
There are many such awards schemes across the UK, and they have the effect of drawing attention to what can be a key component of a business's strategy.
Thus a major local employer may for instance sponsor awards (or an award) in a competition and the accompanying presentation ceremony organised by its local newspaper.
Typically such awards offer 'naming rights' sponsorship opportunities, as well as the chance to sponsor specific awards.
Presentation ceremonies often attract a high level of local media coverage, with consequent PR benefits for winning companies whose contribution to training in a specific field is thus given positive, image-enhancing media coverage.