What is an Apprenticeship?
Choosing an Apprenticeship as a route into employment is becoming increasingly popular. As an Apprentice you will earn while you learn and the real life skills and experience you get from an Apprenticeship are sought after by employers, so you’ll have the edge over other people looking for employment.
As an apprentice you’ll work in a company as an employee, earning a wage and working alongside experienced staff to gain job-specific skills. You’ll also come to College, usually on a day-release basis, to receive training and work towards nationally recognised qualifications.
Apprenticeships are designed with the help of the employers in the industry, so they offer a structured programme that takes you through the skills you need to do a job well.
There are lots of benefits to doing an Apprenticeship. You can earn while you learn, and learn in a way that is best suited to you – through hands-on experience on the job.
Earning while you learning
Apprentices do real jobs for real employers. So you’re paid while you learn. If you are entering work for the ﬁrst time, you will start earning from day one of your Apprenticeship. Employers all over the country recognise and value Apprenticeships as they show that you’ve been trained in the skills they need.
There is no set rate of pay for apprentices, however all employed apprentices must receive a wage of no less than £3.40 per hour. However the average wage per week for an apprentice is now around £170 and in some job roles around £210 per week.
Finally, research shows that apprentices earn, on average, over £100,000 more throughout their lifetime than other employees.
Support during training
As a provider of Apprenticeship programmes we take our role in helping you make a success of our Apprenticeship very seriously. It’s our job, along with your employer to ensure that your training fits your personal requirements, offers the skills needed for the job and satisfies national standards and we’ll also be there to help you through any difficult times.
Building the life you want through a career you enjoy
Apprenticeships can be demanding but they are very rewarding. Because Apprenticeships train you in the skills employers want, they give you choices in your career and your career doesn’t have to stop at the Intermediate, Advanced or Higher Level Apprenticeship. If you want to go on to University you will find that many institutes of Higher Education value your skills and knowledge and will happily offer you a place on a Foundation Degree or other higher level qualifications.
You get to choose
Because Apprenticeships have been developed by a wide range of industry sectors and are available with different types of employers from large national companies through to small businesses you’re bound to find an Apprenticeship that suits your interest and experience
How long is an Apprenticeship last? How much will I earn?
The minimum salary is £3.50 per hour, however many apprentices now earn an average of £170 a week.
Your employment will be for at least 30 hours per week but there may be a small number of circumstances where you’re unable to complete the full 30 hours and in these cases employment will be for at least 16 hours per week.
Your Apprenticeship can take between one and four years to complete depending on the level of Apprenticeship, your ability, commitment and the industry sector.
Can anyone become an Apprentice?
Apprenticeships are open to all age groups above 16 years-old whether you are just leaving school, have been working for years or are seeking to start a new career. You just need to be living in England and not taking part in full-time education.
However competition for places with employers can be fierce, so you will need to show that you are committed, and aware of your responsibilities to both yourself and the company who would employ you. You also need to be happy to work as both part of a team and individually, and be able to use your own initiative.
Qualifications before and after an Apprenticeship
There are different entry requirements depending on the Apprenticeship Level you want to complete and the industry sector you want to work in. There is a minimum standard required to become an Apprentice but even if you don’t meet these entry requirements we can work with you to achieve these requirements, which will then allow you to progress onto our full Apprenticeship programme.
What qualifications will I get?
An Apprenticeship consists of 3 types of qualification:
- A Functional qualification
- A Technical qualification
- A Vocational qualification
Your level of qualification will depend on the Level of Apprenticeship you wish to undertake from either a Level 1 Intermediate Apprenticeship; a Level 2 Advanced Apprenticeship and a Level 3 Higher Apprenticeship
What are the different levels of apprenticeship?
There are three levels of apprenticeship available for those aged 16 and over:
- Intermediate Apprenticeships (equivalent to a Level 2 standard qualification). Apprentices work towards work-based learning qualifications such as an NVQ Level 2, Functional Skills and, in some cases, a relevant knowledge-based qualification. The programme will take between 12-18 months. These provide the skills for a chosen career and allow entry to:
- Advanced Apprenticeships (equivalent to two A-level passes/Level 3). Advanced apprentices work towards work-based learning qualifications such as an NVQ Level 3, Functional Skills and, in most cases, a relevant knowledge-based certificate. The programme will take between 15-24 months. To start this programme, students should ideally have five GCSEs (grade C or above) or have completed an intermediate apprenticeship.
- Higher Apprenticeships develop skills at Level 4. Higher apprentices work towards work-based learning qualifications such as an NVQ Level 4 and, in some cases, a knowledge-based qualification such as a Foundation Degree. These programmes may take up to three years to complete.