Apprenticeships

Making apprenticeships work for you

Apprenticeships are a great mix of hands-on learning in the workplace and theory learned with us in College to give you the practical skills and knowledge you’ll need to thrive in the working world. They’re for anyone aged 16 or over and they allow you to earn and learn at the same time, meaning you have great prospects for the future!

Or, are you an employer looking at taking on an apprentice or thinking about putting existing staff on an Apprenticeship scheme? You would be joining one of over 260,000 workplaces that provide apprenticeship places.

Why Apprenticeships

Looking at taking on an apprentice? Or, looking to put existing staff on an Apprenticeship scheme? You're joining one of over 260,000 workplaces that provide apprenticeship places.

Apprenticeships can help businesses across all sectors by offering a route to harness fresh new talent. UK businesses consider skills shortages and recruitment difficulties the biggest threats to performance and growth, and more than a quarter of these rate this form of vocational training higher than any other qualification.

Apprenticeships ensure that your workforce has the practical skills and qualifications your organisation needs now and in the future. The mixture of on and off job learning ensures they learn the skills that work best for your business.

Workplaces offer apprentice places because they understand the benefits that apprentices bring to their business - increased productivity, improved competitiveness and a committed and competent work-force.

The benefits of having an apprentice are increased productivity and training someone my way. I have been his mentor throughout and it has also allowed me more time to do the administration side of the business such as answering phone calls.

HB Motor Cycle

Employer

The Apprenticeship Levy

Since the general election in 2015, apprenticeships have been a major government priority to improve skills and productivity in the UK. In order to support this the government is making significant changes to how apprenticeships are funded.

By being an apprentice, you get the opportunity to work in the industry while you learn. This will benefit you greatly in the future, by having years of experience in the field, it will look great on your CV and to future employers. So as they say, get in, go far.

Elliott Richmond

Design Apprentice

Apprentice Case Studies

Photo of Billie Bowes Billie Bowes

HND Mechanical Engineering

Photo of Kodi Gledhill Kodi Gledhill

Engineering Apprenticeship

How Apprenticeships can help your business

There are many benefits to be gained from employing an apprentice.

  • Reducing staff turnover.
  • Offering a route to harness fresh new talent. Your apprentice is with you because they want to be - they made the decision to pursue this particular career path and will therefore be more likely to be enthusiastic, motivated and loyal to your company.
  • You can realise increased productivity, improved competitiveness and a combined and competent workforce.
  • Providing local young people the chance to train, learn, earn in work environment.
  • Motivating the workforce
  • Increase competition.
  • Avoiding skills shortages. Apprentices help you fill your skills gaps. They develop the specialist skills you need to keep pace with the latest technology and working practices in your sector.
  • Enabling staff to work towards a qualification.
  • Improving morale of staff.
  • Reducing training costs - it is said that training apprentices is more cost effective than hiring skilled staff, leading to lower overall training and recruitment costs.
  • Training managers of the future. It is widely held that a high proportion of apprentices go on to management positions within their company.
  • Bring in fresh ideas and new ways of thinking.

Over 260,000 workplace offer apprentice places because they understand the benefits that apprentices bring to their business. By offering Apprenticeships you ensure that your workforce has the practical skills and qualifications your organisation needs now and in the future.

  • A new member of staff joins you and works with you for a minimum of 30 hours.
  • For a set period of the working week, you release the apprentice and they use that time to work with trained staff from college. During this time, they are trained in that subject area and complete a framework of skills.
  • This generally means them coming into college and building the skills which they then take back into your business.
  • Apprentices complete a Diploma which gives them knowledge for each vocational area.
  • Contact the apprenticeship office for more guidance and to support you in recruiting the right apprentice for your business.
Why should I have my current members of staff becoming apprentices?
It’s a good opportunity. They are then upskilled in their sector, and as a result become more productive, have higher morale and produce higher quality work than similar employees.

What’s the benefit for me?
As an employer, you benefit from low cost, value-adding training tailored to your business requirements.

You will also gain from having motivated and well trained staff with essential skills, enhanced staff morale, better employee retention rates and improved efficiency and productivity.

The apprentice spends most of their time working in your premises, and will attend college-based learning. Employers use apprenticeship programmes to identify the leaders and managers of the future.

The mixture of on-and off-the-job learning ensures they learn the skills that work best for your business.

  • You agree to release your member of staff to complete an apprenticeship.
  • During this time, they are trained in that subject area and complete a framework of skills.
  • For a set period of the working week, you release the apprentice and they use that time to work with trained staff from college. During this time, they are trained in that subject area and complete a framework of skills.
  • This generally means them coming into college and building the skills which they then take back into your business.
  • Apprentices complete a technical certificate which gives them knowledge for each vocational area.
  • There are various types of apprenticeships at various levels.
  • For more information contact the apprenticeship office and personal guidance.

If you are a member of the CITB you may be eligible for an Apprenticeship Grant. For further information and details on how to apply, please visit www.citb.co.uk

Grants are available for up to £2,000 per apprentice for a maximum of 3 apprentices per employer, starting their apprenticeship programme between 1st January and 31st July 2017, depending on certain criteria being met. Grants will be offered on a ‘first come, first served’ basis.

The AGE Grant is administered by the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) but Wakefield College must start the application process on behalf of the eligible business by completing an online registration form. Your assigned Assessor will discuss this on their first visit.

For full details of eligibility please visit: http://www.the-lep.com/for-business/skills-and-training/apprenticeship-support-and-funding/lep-apprenticeship-grant/.

Frequently Asked Questions From Employers

Because it makes good business sense. Today, more than 100,000 employers are using apprenticeships to improve their business performance.

  • Apprenticeship schemes are developed to meet the needs of employers.
  • There’s a clear return on investment and a chance to upskill your workforce.
  • You have a member of staff who learns skills from you and is trained cost effectively.
  • The government contributes to the cost of the training, saving you money.
  • It motivates and improves the confidence of current employees.
  • Apprenticeships indirectly increase productivity and improve retention.

Apprenticeship programmes are available to anyone aged 16 and over and are available to both new and existing employees. You can either choose to recruit an apprentice, or place an existing employee on the programme. Exemptions do apply to a minority of applicants but by calling our department we will be able to advise.

What will it cost me?

Apprenticeships are about working together. You are responsible for paying your apprentice a wage, the current minimum amount for apprenticeships is £3.50 per hour (as of 1st April 2017).

For anyone up to the age of 19, the apprenticeship is funded by the government. After this, we ask for a small contribution from the employer.

You will need to provide on the job training support and a safe working environment, contribute towards your apprentice’s reviews and allow them time off to attend college.

Apprenticeships are about working together. You are responsible for paying your apprentice a wage, the current minimum amount for apprenticeships is £3.50 per hour (as of 1st April 2017).

For anyone up to the age of 19, the apprenticeship is funded by the government. After this, we ask for a small contribution from the employer.

You will need to provide on the job training support and a safe working environment, contribute towards your apprentice’s reviews and allow them time off to attend college.

As well as helping with the recruitment process we help and support you from start to finish. When you take on an apprentice, we appoint an account mentor to become your key point of contact with the college. The mentor works with you to follow the progress of the apprentice and is available to you should any issues arise.

  • Full assistance and support with recruitment, selection and assessments of candidates.
  • Regular visits for updates on attendance and progress.
  • Delivery of a Diploma, Functional Skills, NVQ assessment and portfolio guidance.

Firstly we need to discuss your specific training requirements and business needs. From here we can work with you to find the most suitable applicant, or assess the ability of an existing employee. We then help you with the whole process; whether it is screening existing employees or assisting with interview procedures, through to selection.

Get in touch

Chat with Apprenticeship Recruitment regarding how you can ‘earn while you learn’, telephone 01924 789469 or email apprenticeships@wakefield.ac.uk.

Chat with Business Development about how an apprentice can benefit your organisation, telephone 01924 789761 or email businessdevelopment@wakefield.ac.uk.

Download a copy of our School Leaver Prospectus, or request a printed copy from Course information.

Let’s stay in touch

Sign up and we’ll keep you up to date with relevant news, events and new course offerings.