If you are an employer you have probably considered the pros and cons of employing an apprentice to work for your business. This is something you are not alone in, as there are 1000s of companies across the UK, from retail giants such as Tesco and Boots to small independent nurseries that have taken on apprentices and seen the real benefits that they can provide. As a provider of apprenticeships at Twin, we are often asked by businesses what the true benefits are of taking on an apprentice. So, if you aren't yet convinced that an apprentice would be right for your business, take a look at some of the reasons it could be beneficial to you.
The Business Benefits
All too often apprentices are viewed in a negative way, and the biggest problem with this opinion is it generally comes from people who have never employed an apprentice, so have no experience of working with them. At Twin we have worked with apprentices for over 5 years now and the benefits of hiring apprentices are easy to see. Firstly, the enthusiasm that apprentices bring to a team never fails to impress the businesses that take them on. Remember, apprentices aren't just working for a business to earn a pay cheque, they are working to learn new skills and become an important member of a team. After all, no one wants to be a tea boy/girl, and apprentices are no different.
Apprentices will also come into your business and learn to work your way, so there won't be the same risk factor as there is when hiring a new employee who already has their own way of doing things. This makes it easier to mould your work force to work to your company ethos, and will also help in creating a strong team work ethic. Don't feel that this means you will be overloaded with training needed to get a new apprentice up to speed though. The apprenticeship programme has been designed to reduce the amount of staff training that businesses need to provide, as apprentices complete modules in key skills which match the job role they are fulfilling in your business. For example, if you have an apprentice working in business administration, they will complete modules such as 'communication in a business environment', and 'producing business documents'.
Many businesses we have worked with have also seen their apprentices become full time employees at the end of their programme and even remain in the business for many years. This highlights the loyalty of apprentices; if you buy into them, they will buy into your business. This is something which is beneficial for the longevity of a business, and helps to create a core of staff who have grown with the business and understand the company ethos.
The Benefits to Young People
Alongside the obvious benefits to your business, apprenticeships are a huge benefit to the person you decide to take on as you will be giving them an opportunity that they would not have had otherwise. Some of our applicants have even left full or part time work to gain experience from an apprenticeship in the field they want to pursue in a bid to enhance their career prospects. This is one of the key reasons why apprenticeships are such a good opportunity for young people, as they allow them to gain entry into a career path that would have been blocked to them otherwise.
Apprenticeships are also key in giving young people the confidence they need to believe in their own ability, as the guidance they receive from their managers and colleagues while completing an apprenticeship can really help them to excel and grow as both a person and an employee. Finally, apprenticeships help 16-23yr olds by giving them a recognised qualification and work experience in a relevant field, both of which are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain, due to rise in University fees and the competitiveness of the UK job market.
Thanks to the strong support given to the apprenticeship programme by the UK government there are also financial incentives for any employer taking part. These incentives are made up of a grant for employers taking on an apprentice, of up to £1,500 depending on certain criteria being met, and up to 100% funding of the training cost which will be paid directly to the apprenticeship provider.
If you are interested in employing an apprentice and would like more information, please contact one of our placement coordinators.