5 Reasons Your Business Needs To Open The Door To More Apprentices

19 October 2016 -


Perfect for young people looking for tailored hands-on experience and earn a regular salary, apprenticeships are also an attractive and affordable option for employers of all sizes looking to bolster their operations with fresh talent

Jermaine Haughton

While in times past, some employers and students alike may have been put off by the low-paid, often manual and restricted nature of apprenticeships, the past decade has seen an explosion in the variety of highly-rated, industry-recognised apprenticeship schemes in most UK sectors.

And leading firms have taken heed of the Government’s increased focus on developing apprenticeship programmes by providing a series of entry level work and study opportunities in their respective skilled trades.

Despite only half (48%) of young people saying they have been told about options for apprenticeships by their school, the CMI's new Age of Uncertainty report shows that students still recognise the benefits, with two in three (65%) respondents citing good job prospects.

Read CMI’s full report on the power of apprenticeships and engaging with the next generation of leaders

Here are just five reasons your business needs apprentices:

1. Get The Skills You Need

Given the current skills shortage faced by many companies, especially in technical, digital and scientific fields, apprenticeships provide managers with a great opportunity to develop ambitious and young new recruits to meet their needs.

In fact, some 82% of employers take on apprentices to build the skills capacity within their business, as recruiters struggle find the particular skills they need in the graduate market to help move their business forward.

2. Simplified Training Process

For smaller companies that do not have much experience of providing dedicated in-house training, the process of managing apprentices is made much easier through the help of the training provider, who structures the entire scheme.

Training providers handle the apprentices’ formal training, access to funding, qualification and assessment, meaning employers can put most of their focus on challenging the employee in the workplace.

3. Give You A Lift

Ambitious, energetic and full of enthusiasm, apprentices also bring a freshness and revitalisation to your workplace.

For many young apprentices, the schemes are their first proper jobs, and the chance to earn-while-they-learn means that they are often very keen to learn new skills and knowledge to help equip themselves for a successful career in their respective industry.

Apprentices also bring their core education (maths, English and IT skills), and are already accustomed to having to learn new things quickly and adapt to different challenges accordingly. The investment in an apprentice can therefore, in time, allow existing experienced staff to be freed up to work on other projects.

4. Apprentices are more loyal

Through apprenticeships, managers have access to the best young talent, who are more likely to be loyal to the company that has supported their career development.

Research has shown that because apprentices feel valued in the workplace, they are loyal employees and this improves staff retention and helps to build and sustain a strong team ethic within your company.

By taking apprentices at  a young age, and tailoring training specifically to the needs of the employer, young workers are more likely to advance through the ranks of the firm rather than move to pastures new.

A study by Populus, conducted for National Apprenticeship Week, found that 80% of employers questioned feel that apprenticeships reduce staff turnover, suggesting that apprentices feel loyal to the company that trained them.

5. Cost Effective to businesses and the economy

Perhaps most importantly, apprentices are an investment that have been proven to boost company financial performance.

Employers wanting to train an apprentice can access government financial support that will pay for some, or even all, of the training involved.

Regardless, apprentices often pay for themselves within a few years and can improve a company’s bottom line by boosting productivity and making companies more effective.

A study by the UK Commission on Employment finds that 88% of employers feel apprenticeships are a cost-effective way to train staff.

Read The Age of Uncertainty and find out more about how apprenticeships can give your organisation a lift

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