More than 400 apprenticeships have been created in Barnsley over the last year thanks to a job creation scheme.
The positions have been created through business support programme Enterprising Barnsley, which was launched in April last year.
The new phase is expected to create 550 jobs by June 2015 – and has already led to 402 new positions.
Phase one, which ran between 2009 and 2012, supported the creation of 630 new jobs.
Funded by European money, the programme offers free support to businesses wanting to expand and, since its launch, 279 companies have been supported to help create new jobs.
VC Electronics, which manufactures circuit boards for cars, boats, street lights and tracking devices, is among those to have benefitted.
It took over part of a former rival firm and 10 of its employees and created another five positions at its factory in Goldthorpe.
Pat Cummins, the firm’s managing director, said: “Enterprising Barnsley’s support has been invaluable.
“I have been in business for 15 years and during that time I have been approached by a lot of organisations who say they can help, but so often you get nothing out of it.
“There has been very little that has really worked until I came across Enterprising Barnsley.
“Their help is really practical and not just ticking boxes.”
The Enterprising Barnsley programme is a partnership between Barnsley Business and Innovation Centre and Barnsley Development Agency, Barnsley Council’s economic development team.
It is funded by a £2,259,511 grant from the European Regional Development Fund.
n For details, call Martin Beasley on 01226 772648.