On this area of the site you will find information on apprenticeships.
What are Apprenticeships?
As employees, apprentices earn a wage and work alongside experienced staff to gain job-specific skills. Off the job, usually on a day-release basis, apprentices receive training to work towards nationally recognised qualifications. Anyone living in England, over 16 years-old and not in full-time education can apply. Apprenticeships can take between one and four years to complete depending on the level of Apprenticeship, the apprentices’ ability and the industry sector. The minimum salary is £2.60 per hour; however, many apprentices earn significantly more.
Who are they for?
Apprenticeships are open to all age groups above 16years-old whether you are just leaving school, have been working for years or are seeking to start a new career. You just need to be living in England and not taking part in full-time education. There may be different entry requirements depending on the Apprenticeship and the industry sector. However competition for places with employers can be fierce, so you will need to show that you are committed, and aware of your responsibilities to both yourself and the company who would employ you. You also need to be happy to work as both part of a team and individually, and be able to use your own initiative.
Apprenticeships are designed with the help of the employers in the industry, so they offer a structured programme that takes you through the skills you need to do a job well. There are targets and checks to make sure that your employer is supporting you and you are making progress. As an employee you will be in employment for most of your time as most training takes place on the job. The rest usually takes place at a local college or a specialist training organisation. You can complete this off-the-job training on day release or over a number of days in a block. The amount of time you spend varies according to your Apprenticeship. It could be anything from one day every other fortnight to two days every week. So all the things you study will be useful in your job and help you succeed in your future career. Your employment will be for at least 30 hours per week. There may be a small number of circumstances where the learner cannot complete the full 30 hours. In these cases employment will be for more than 16 hours per week.
Apprenticeship Facts - UCAS
Job Offer + Training Offer = Apprenticeship
Apprenticeships combine employment with work based qualifications such as an NVQs which are assessed by carrying out tasks in the work place.
Apprenticeships cover 180 different types of jobs including Business administration, Hospitality, Engineering, Hairdressing etc...
- - These can be done when you finish school, but you can start one when you are aged 16-24.
- - You must complete the apprenticeship by the age of 24.
- - There is more funding for Training placements for 16-18 year olds.
- - Your assessor will visit you in the work place.
- - An Apprenticeship will take 1-2 years to complete.
- - Once completed this can lead onto further qualifications or an Advanced Apprenticeship.
Commonly asked Questions and Answers
- - Will I get holidays? Annual leave is accrued over service.
- - Are there any entry requirements? There are different entry grades for different occupations. Some employers may ask for GCSEs at C grade or higher including Maths and English, but you do not need formal qualifications.
- - When should I apply? Applications take place between November and April/May each year.
- - Will I be employed? Most are ‘employed status’.
- - How do I apply? Online application, paper based form, approaching employers directly.
- - Do I have to go for an interview/assessment test? You will be asked to attend an interview with the employer & training provider, while some occupational areas will set an assessment test e.g. electrical installation.
- - Don’t know whether to choose Work or University? Don’t worry you may be able to do BOTH!
- - You may be able to find an employer who will sponsor part time study for a diploma or a degree or NVQ4.
- - You will usually need good passes in relevant Level 3 qualifications, some will take candidates with Good GCSE passes.
- - Click Connexions-bs.co.uk to find local examples.
September – Enjoy your GCSE/GCE/BTECs, think about what skills you are gaining, think about finding part time work in a related job.
October – Research your career ideas, talk to staff about how you are getting on. Start to work on your CV and application letters, think about BACK UP PLANS
January – Start contacting employers directly to ask about vacancies, look at the Connexions vacancies online, start applying to training providers.
March – Attend assessment tests, complete assessments online, attend interviews, follow up employer applications. Make sure you have a BACK UP PLAN
July – Finish your course and hopefully start apprenticeship or put your back up plan into practice.
You can book in to talk to a Connexions Adviser or College Careers Adviser at any time in the year to get help making choices and applications. Click here for more information: www.wmjobs.co.uk
How to apply?
You will need to work hard to make contact with local employers, about 60% of jobs are NEVER advertised, so you will have to seek out good opportunities.
Search out local employers you could apply to – Use your local knowledge!
- Talk to friends and family.
- Use the Yellow Pages or the Internet.
- Follow up contacts made on work experience.
- Read the local papers, job section and classified ads for trades.
- Location: Think about the job you are applying for and where it would be located so you can target your search e.g. Town Centre, Retail Park, Industrial Estate, Business Parks.
Approaching Employers Directly:
- First impressions count, make sure they are positive ones. You will need to be proactive to make contact with employers. You could:
- Send a Letter and CV
- Get a parent to ring them up
- Ring them up
- Turn up in Person
- Turn up in Person and leave a CV
- Attend Careers fairs/recruitment fairs
- Think about the following statements and which method of contact matches most statements!
- Keen, Flexible, Polite, Presentable, you can find their work place, able to organise yourself, good communication skills, you’ve got initiative, determined, confident, the chance to impress, they will know how to contact you, lazy, not bothered, just another CV.
- What method will you use for success?
Apply to training providers
- Training providers use a mix of paper and online application forms. Check out the training provider section to find out who you should be contacting for the job you are interested in. Talk to a Mr Chris Altree the Connexions PA to get the low down.
- National training providers e.g. Construction skills & BEST receive 1000′s of applications keep a record of who you have contacted and when.
- Can’t make an appointment? Contact the provider to re-arrange they will not chase you!
- Taken an online or paper assessment test? Contact the provider to check your score, they will only contact you if you got a pass mark that matches the criteria for your first choice NOT your second. In some cases you can re sit the test.
- An offer from a training provider does not = apprenticeship you still need to find an employer. Some training providers will help with this.
These providers can offer your ‘Training’ you will still need to find an employer to complete the work place assessments required.
It is important to apply to training providers as some have good contacts with employers, and being on a training providers books is a really good selling point.
Training providers have different methods of application; some will require you to take an assessment test.
Providers can be national or local and cover a wide range of work areas.
- For information on apprenticeships try the following link:
- Future Talent
- Future-talent is the fastest growing national apprenticeship resource for 15-19 year olds. Its free for career advisers and young people to use, and features apprenticeships, entry level jobs, courses, sponsored degrees and more.