Apprenticeships Case Study
Apprenticeships with Ian Lawson, L&D Manager at Shropshire Homes
How did you get into offering apprenticeships?
There was a company desire to be bringing in a trainee. As a result we recruited 1 or 2 apprentices a year but over the last 3 years we have pushed it up to 6 each year. Experienced people have retired from the industry and we need to replace them with the new stars of the future.
What have you got back from offering them?
It keeps us young as a company when we keep bringing in new people with new ideas and new perspectives. It has been encouraging to see their enthusiasm to learn and have a go. Their desire to learn and try things. Initially they can only assist their mentors who they work with but as they become more competent they are able to complete specific tasks on the houses. This gives them a real sense of achievement when they can say I helped to build that.
Would you recommend them to others?
Yes I would. Our experience has been positive. When it comes to the apprentices and the expectations that some people have of these “learners” I do have to remind people that they were young once and what were they like at the age of 17 or 18! They usually go quiet at that point. It has also been great to see people make that successful transition from year 11 and the school blazer, to the construction site with steel top capped boots, a hard hat and a high viz waistcoat. By taking the time to select good people they have enjoyed the role and the mix of on-site learning and the one day a week at college. This blended learning approach has proved a success.
Fully understand the recruitment process to reduce the likelihood of surprises. Advertise early if you can so that you have your candidates signed up and ready to start when it works for you. Make sure you supervise them well and if possible provide a mentor for them.
With thanks to Shrewsbury Colleges Group for this case study