My advice to employers of apprentices

Neil Burrows Burnley College

As I’m writing this, GCSE results day is still fresh in my memory.

As always at Burnley College it was ‘full on’: the day when our applicants arrive fresh from picking up their GCSE results, ready to enrol on their courses.

It’s a new chapter for them: a fresh start and a chance to shine at the number one college in England according to the government’s National Achievement Rate tables for learners aged 16-18. (Sorry, can’t resist adding that … we’re so proud!)

There were learners embarking on A Levels and T Levels, as well as vocational pathways.

And our Themis apprenticeship team were kept busy all day, too, supporting existing applicants who had popped in to confirm their results, eager to start their apprenticeships, as well as those exploring apprenticeships for the first time.

On the day, our recruiters were advising apprentices on how to make that important transition from student to employee.

Yes, there were some nerves on the part of the new apprentices, but the vast majority were excited for the challenges ahead.

Hearing the Themis team pass on those words of wisdom made me think of the advice I’d give an employer taking on an apprentice for the first time. This is what came to mind:

Forge a really strong relationship with the Themis team

Our support team can keep  you up to date with any additional funding or training opportunities that may be open to your business and your apprentice’s trainer/assessor will ensure everything is on track for success.

Provide an induction

It’s an opportunity to explain your company ethos and the behaviours expected of your apprentice.

Provide feedback and encouragement

Your apprentice is learning all the time, in the workplace and in their college training sessions. Be an active part of the learning process.

Be open to learning from your apprentice

They can give you valuable insights into the latest technologies and specialist knowledge, as well as new audiences or customer bases.

These are the first four. There are many more and I’d be interested to know what advice you’d give, as an employer.

Enjoyed this? Read more from Neil Burrows, Burnley College

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