Taking on an apprentice is one of the most important parts of any long-term business plan and has been for thousands of years.
From the craft guild apprentices of the middle ages to the modern structured qualifications and apprenticeship providers of today, an apprenticeship not only benefits the apprentice by providing them with a relevant, highly sought-after qualification, but also the employer by actively training for the future.
However, with so many options for apprentices and employers alike, it is essential that any apprenticeship is built on a solid foundation, and with that in mind, here are the most important qualities found in the most successful apprenticeships.
Foundational Support From Beginning To End
Apprenticeships are a journey, first and foremost, with a clear starting point and clear destination. This makes them different from other forms of employee and it is essential for an employer to bear that in mind when it comes to support provision.
From the very first day, and often as soon as they are accepted onto the scheme, a new apprentice should be given a support network that can form as their first point of contact and can help mentor them throughout the scheme, ensure they are progressing in the classroom and help them prepare for assessments.
This mentorship should be kept from the start of the apprentice’s journey until they get their qualification, and often beyond, and ensuring that they are adequately supported pays dividends orders of magnitude more than the investment.
Dedicated Time To Learning
An apprentice is a student, and legally needs to spend at least 20 per cent of their working week doing in-class assessments, but more than this a successful apprenticeship provides as much opportunity for apprentices to learn as much as possible, both on the job and in the classroom.
This can include providing dedicated time during the work day to complete assignments, providing opportunities to shadow people and learn new aspects of the business, and creating creative, well-rounded future industry leaders.