Recruiting an apprentice is a way of increasing your workforce, growing your business and improving productivity.
It’s a great way of introducing young people to your company, and it can be cheaper to train up an apprentice than employ new fully trained staff. Training an apprentice can often identify a skill gap within your company, which is an ideal position to give to someone in training.
There are a few things to consider before hiring an apprentice:
Make sure you have a mentor in place; though an apprentice can bring great things to the company, they need a place where they can flourish and learn. Part of this is having a mentor to provide necessary guidance and support.
Picking the right training programme is essential, as an apprentice will need to work towards a nationally – recognised qualification in their chosen sector. With over 200 Apprenticeship programmes available in the UK, covering over 1,200 job roles, there are plenty to choose from that can benefit your organisation.
Providing regular feedback can really help improve apprentice’s skills; remember this might be the apprentice’s first job so feedback can be really helpful.
Having a work trial can help you see if the apprentice is right for the company, and if the apprentice is likely to enjoy their work. If the job and the candidate don’t match well the first time, you are better off knowing before they start as you can find another candidate who is more suited to the position.
Encourage your apprentice to keep learning, it can really improve their skills and bring even more benefits to the company. An Intermediate Apprenticeship can be equivalent to five GCSEs, and an Advanced Apprenticeship is equivalent to two ‘A’ Levels. Higher Apprenticeships and foundation degrees, which can be carried out alongside work and provide effective progression pathways.
Motivation is key to turning an apprentice into a loyal and valuable employee, especially if they feel they are being invested in. Incentives, perks and other benefits can be used help apprentices see their both their own progress, and their potential.
Lastly, remember that your apprentice will probably be nervous; try to sympathise and make them feel comfortable, especially on their first day!