How To Start An Apprenticeship Program

How-to-Start-an-Apprenticeship-Program

Apprenticeships are a great method of training a new generation of employees. For businesses, apprenticeships can be extremely beneficial.

They can help get some fresh blood into the industry. Plus, these new employees will receive more skills and training. 

If you are interested in setting one up, this guide will help you to start an apprenticeship program in your business. Though it may seem like a daunting prospect, it can be quite simple to begin an apprenticeship program. 

What Is An Apprenticeship?

Let’s start with the basics. An apprenticeship is a form of employment. However, the apprentice is employed to do a job while they are training to obtain a qualification. As a result, they can get paid to do a job while also receiving valuable training and experience. 

Apprenticeships can be started in a variety of business settings, such as banking, engineering, and hairdressing. If a job requires a license, this can be obtained during the apprenticeship. 

Why Start A Program?

There are several reasons why you may decide to form your own apprenticeship program. Firstly, it can enable you to have a workforce with more skills and experience.

Apprenticeships allow workers to pick up skills and experience as they learn. Thus, you can tailor their training to develop certain skills. 

If specific skills are not widely present in your workforce, you can make sure that this skill is an important part of the apprenticeship. This will give you the opportunity to fill any skill gaps. 

Moreover, research has shown that businesses experience an improvement in the products or services that they offer after implementing an apprenticeship scheme. 

Furthermore, your business will be actively involved in fighting unemployment, specifically among the youth. Not only is this a moral win for you, but it will reflect well on your business too. This is also a technique of adding to the local economy. 

How To Start An Apprenticeship Program?

If you are seriously considering starting an apprenticeship scheme, here are our top tips: 

Choose A Framework

Frameworks are essential for establishing an apprenticeship. Basically, a framework is a document that enables you to detail all of the roles and responsibilities of the apprentice.

To start your apprenticeship, you must apply for a framework that is relevant to your industry. This will allow your apprenticeship to be judged by a sector body.  

Set Realistic Aims And Objectives 

For the apprenticeship to be worthwhile, you will need to set aims for both the company and the apprentice to achieve. If not, it may be difficult to find someone willing to start the apprenticeship.

The program should offer useful training and valued qualifications. For example, if you are starting a plumbing apprenticeship, a plumbing certificate should be offered. 

Pick A Training Provider

Next, you will need to select a training provider. While you will learn on the job, there will also be elements of classroom-based training. You will need to find somewhere that can conduct this education. For example, you may want to choose a local school, college, or university.

When selecting a training provider, you will need to create an educational plan. This scheme will need to be engaging and interesting. Otherwise, apprentices are unlikely to sign up for it. 

Identify The Payment Method

One of the main advantages of an apprenticeship is that an employee can earn money while they are trained. Consequently, you will need to choose a payment structure for your apprenticeship. This will include deciding how much you pay the apprentice and when they are paid. 

As with a standard job, there is a minimum wage that apprentices can be paid. On average, an apprentice will earn approximately $15 per hour. As a result, you may want to consider paying your apprentices a similar wage. 

Therefore, you will need to figure out where this money is coming from. You may be able to find some funding schemes for your apprenticeship, which will need to be put toward the training.

The amount of money you have will impact how much the apprenticeship pays and how many apprentices you can hire. 

Create A Training Plan

Alongside the classroom-based learning, you will need to train the apprentice as they work. Similar to an internship, apprenticeships also provide on-the-job education. Thus, you will need to devise a training scheme. 

To create this plan, you will need to select someone to perform the training. This should be an experienced and well-informed employee. Preferably, they should have been with the company for a while.

This will allow them to train the apprentice and answer any questions they have. You may need to promote this employee, giving them a different job title. 

Additionally, you will need to decide the frequency of the training. Will it occur every other day? Will the apprentice be trained once a week? This plan will need to answer these questions. 

Select A Recruitment System

Once you have ironed out all of the kinks of the apprenticeship, you must determine how you are going to recruit an employee. A lot of apprentices tend to be newly graduated students.

Therefore, your company may want to reach out to local educational institutions to set up a recruitment scheme. Of course, apprentices can also be found elsewhere, so you may want to explore a variety of recruitment options. 

To determine whether a candidate is right for the role, you must first interview them. Alongside this interview, you should think about the application process.

For example, you may want to ask potential applicants to write a CV. This will allow you to filter the candidates before they make it to the interview stage. This interview will ascertain whether the candidate is suitable for the apprenticeship. 

To ensure that your apprenticeship is being legally conducted. You may want to contact a lawyer to draft this document.

This agreement will list important information about the apprenticeship, such as the wages, time off, and sick days. Moreover, you will also have to detail the start and end of the apprenticeship. 

Once you have finished this document, it will need to be signed by your apprentices before they start. This will signify that they have agreed to the conditions of the contract. Plus, it will cover you in case of any contractual disputes. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Who Pays For An Apprenticeship?

This program will be funded both by your company and the government. The extent of the government funding will depend, though it can be as much as 90%! Therefore, we encourage you to research how much funding you can get. 

What Qualities Make A Good Apprentice?

Among the skills you should look out for, a great candidate should be:

  • Passionate about the opportunity
  • Willing to develop new skills
  • Personable
  • Good at working in a team
  • Adaptable
  • Responsible
  • Capable of managing their time

Final Thoughts

While it may initially seem strenuous to set up an apprenticeship program, we hope that this guide will have made you more confident. This apprenticeship can be really beneficial to both the employee and your company.

Jamie Willis