All this week, National Apprenticeship Week 2019 (NAW19) steps into the spotlight, with events being held across the country to engage, inform and inspire the next generation of talented professionals.

Hireserve has a long history of creating opportunities where apprentices can shape their early careers and gain integral day-to-day business experiences to challenge and inspire them.

In this post we catch up with Jack, our Apprentice Applications Developer who joined us in 2017 and is now on the verge of completing the last stage of his apprenticeship. We then hear from Karen, our Operations Director, on Hireserve’s stance on apprenticeship schemes and the importance of events such as NAW19.

 

Hi Jack, you spoke last year on how apprenticeships can help carve out a career through first-hand experience and exposure. How do you feel about that comment now a year on? And have there been instances where working as an apprentice has surprised you in any way?

The apprenticeship has proven to be invaluable towards developing my skills, the 1 year of office experience has taught me much more than I feel I could have ever learned in a classroom.

As a result, my perspective on what it is like to work in the IT industry has entirely shifted, and I feel far more confident in my career potential than I had done before. The most surprising experience for me whilst working at Hireserve as an apprentice is how I’m treated just like the rest of the team. The trust given to me has meant I’ve been able to work with autonomy on big projects and be a valued opinion in discussion. Plus, everyone has been very willing to help should I need the extra hand.

How important do you think awareness weeks such as this (NAW) are for younger people looking to start a career?

For me, NAW helps raise awareness to younger people who don’t feel comfortable with the ‘traditional’ university route to understand the other opportunities there are. An apprenticeship can seem scary, and many young people may not know what to expect from an Apprenticeship or not feel ready to start working. NAW helps young people better understand what is involved and the opportunity to find out more and ask their own questions. It is especially helpful for those interested in an apprenticeship to be able to talk to an apprentice and hear their experience in the position.

 

Hi Karen, Hireserve has been an active advocate for apprenticeship schemes for many years. How important are awareness campaigns such as National Apprenticeship Week in highlighting the benefits for apprentices and employers?

I think they are essential. Making apprenticeships mainstream and a real option other than going to University can only be a good thing. These campaigns can open the eyes of young people to a wealth of opportunities for their career development and offer them clarity in their decision. As for businesses, it’s a chance for them to showcase the very best examples of successful apprenticeships.

Understanding how other businesses have adopted an apprenticeship scheme can illustrate succinctly the opportunity they afford and how they can add real value to a business. Knowledge is always essential and educating all parties about apprentices can only be a good thing for everyone concerned.

What have you seen in our apprentices new and old throughout their time with Hireserve? And what do you see when you look at them now?

All four apprentices have done exceptionally well. They have all joined with limited experience but we have chosen individuals with drive and determination. Without exception, each of our apprentices came to us with real enthusiasm for the apprenticeship opportunity and have developed into valuable team members with huge potential for continued career growth.

It is wonderful to see apprentices come into Hireserve as new team members and watch them grow in confidence.  The interaction between them and senior team members is fantastic to see, and even more satisfying when they find their voice in Team Hireserve.

Any other comments you’d like to add on how Hireserve sees apprenticeships working with SMEs?

I think SMEs can really benefit from the enthusiasm and eagerness to learn that the majority of apprentices bring to the table. And for apprentices, working in an SME enables them to work from day one with highly experienced individuals. This is an education in itself and is such a valuable experience. The training provided is key to the scheme but the day to day education within the SME is invaluable.

 

To hear more about our apprentices’ stories new and old, head over to their profile pages via the links below, and to learn more about National Apprenticeship Week 2019 head over to their website here.

 

 

About the author

George Lee - Digital Marketing Assistant - The Hireserve gatekeeper for social media and regular content writer, George covers a wide range of topics for the blog. He also takes a creative lead on visual assets for our website and events. Head over to our Meet the Team page to learn more.