Theresa May is promising to "revolutionise" skills training if she is returned to No 10 in the General Election on Thursday.
The Prime Minister highlighted plans in the Conservative manifesto to replace the 13,000 technical qualifications currently available with a new streamlined system of "T-levels".
She said the qualifications - in subjects including construction, creative and design and engineering and manufacturing - would be designed with employers to ensure they met the needs of business and the wider economy.
At the same time, the Conservatives are also promising to establish new institutes of technology in every major city in England, sponsored by leading employers and linked to local universities.
The party said the new bodies - which would be given the same freedoms universities get including access to grant and research funding - would provide skills for local, regional and national industry, driving growth and prosperity.
Mrs May said: "With the right deal, Brexit represents an opportunity for a brighter future - and in order to help realise it, I want to revolutionise skills training in this country.
"For the first time, we will put technical excellence on a par with academic education.
"If elected on June 8, one of the first things my Government will do is to begin the work of introducing new T-levels for post-16 education.
"We want to ensure when students qualify they will be genuinely 'work-ready' and able to make the most of the opportunities ahead."