It’s nearly National Apprenticeship Week (NAW). The weeklong celebration from 14-18 March 2016 is devised by the National Apprenticeship Service, and aims to praise apprentices and the positive impact apprenticeships have on businesses and the wider economy. In honour of NAW we take a look back at some of our success stories.
First up, Nottinghamshire based GP practice, Forest Medical Group who took on four new apprentices:
Forest Medical’s partnership with us began when they were getting lots of interest from the general public wanting to come and study as an apprentice at their practices. As a result, we were asked to recruit four apprentices to work in their customer services division.
To start the process, we met with the Forest Medical Group to discuss their business needs and to help them draw-up a job description and advertise the vacancies on their behalf.
We then shortlisted the candidates based on their abilities, and conducted telephone interviews as the first stage of the recruitment process. One of our placement officers then wrote reports based on the performance of the interviewees and handed them over to Forest Medical for them to make the final decision on who would be invited to a formal interview at the practice.
Speaking of the recruitment process, Nicola Ryan said it was “absolutely brilliant” and that “very little effort” had to be put in by any members of her team, which obviously was a huge benefit to such a busy medical practice.
After thorough assessments and a formal interview, Forest Medical has welcomed Trudy Curtis, Emily Moore, Beth Alais, and Kim Williams to their team.
On a day-to-day basis they are supported by senior receptionist Hayley Pattison, who comments that “the apprentices in reception are proving to be excellent.”
Speaking of why they decided to take on an apprenticeship over other forms of education or employment, Kim Williams (21) said that customer service is something she wants to do as a career and an apprenticeship made her feel “less nervous about starting my career. As an apprentice I am going to come into this not knowing it all and starting from the bottom – people aren’t going to have high expectations of me so it’s less pressure because employers can mould my skill-sets to their business needs.”
Similarly, Trudy Curtis (39) agreed “starting as an apprentice means employers don’t expect as much from me, which is less daunting having never worked in this profession before.” Trudy adds that “being a bit older put me off at first, but I decided to go for it. It’s good because you’re learning, working and getting paid – it has benefits all round.”
The best thing about an apprenticeship is that “every day is a learning day” says Trudy, “we are constantly learning new skills and being taught new things.” Beth Alais (19) says that the best thing about her apprenticeship is that it has built up her confidence and helped her to “understand people and how to deal with them in different situations.” To add to this, Beth comments: “I knew I would get the chance to learn new skills that I could use not only in the working environment, but in everyday life.”
When it comes to getting a little help and support to retain these skills, all apprentices agreed with Trudy who stated “if we need support, then we’ll get it.” The support network for apprentices studying with us is huge – not only do apprentices get the help and support they need from their employer, but they also have access to a dedicated line manager with us and an assessor to help them on their journey to success.
If you think an apprenticeship could be the ideal way of gaining employment, or a great way of moulding your workforce, get in touch with us to find out more about the benefits of apprenticeships. Call us on 0800 121 8317, or email us.