How to find apprenticeships for existing staff

8 Mins

Typically, apprenticeship courses are seen as a valuable solution if you need to bolster your existing teams with new emerging talent and are often associated with young people. However, apprenticeships can be much more than this and can be a fantastic option for your existing employees, no matter their age or experience. This article will outline how to find apprenticeships for existing staff, the importance of choosing the right apprenticeship training provider and the benefits of apprenticeships for existing staff.

Why choose an apprenticeship for existing staff?

When considering how to get an apprenticeship for your existing staff and before you find an apprenticeship course best suited to the needs of your business and the careers of your employees, you must first ask yourself why you're choosing an apprenticeship. For example, is it to upskill your staff or provide ample opportunities to your emerging talent to increase employee retention? Alternatively, you may require more information on how and why apprenticeships could benefit your existing team, and if so, that's fine; we'll cover this later in the piece. 

When answering the question ‘why choose an apprenticeship for existing staff’, the responses vary from business to business. However, asking yourself this question is essential to ensure your commitment to embarking on the apprenticeship route for your employees.

Here are some key questions you should ask yourself before you find an apprenticeship course for your existing staff:

  • Why are you choosing an apprenticeship for your existing staff?
  • Who from your team will you enrol on an apprenticeship?
  • What do you know about apprenticeship training programmes?
  • Is your business ready to take on an apprentice?
  • How will an apprenticeship course benefit your staff? (see Benefits of Apprenticeships for Existing Staff)

Find an Apprenticeship Course

Once you’ve considered why you want to hire an apprentice from your internal team, it’s time to find an apprenticeship course. According to GOV.UK, there are over 600 apprenticeship courses available in the UK, so you have plenty of apprenticeship options. First, however, it’s essential to choose an apprenticeship course that best suits the needs of your business and your employees.

For example, if you already have an employee in mind to enrol on an apprenticeship or know you need to gain a specific skill set in your organisation, search for apprenticeship courses that can fill this skills gap. 

Additionally, an apprenticeship course could be the perfect solution if an existing staff member has approached you about additional training or upskilling opportunities to progress their career. In this instance, make sure to work with your employee to find an apprenticeship course that meets the needs of both you and your employee. Ultimately, you both need to agree on what apprenticeships would be best.

You can find apprenticeship courses through a quick Google search or by scrolling social media. Although this is an excellent place to start, a smart move would be to find an apprenticeship provider to assist with your search.

Find an Apprenticeship Training Provider

When it comes to apprenticeship training providers, you must partner with a government-funded company that can meet your specific needs and offers you the best apprenticeship solutions possible. 

Apprenticeship training providers should support you and your apprentice throughout the apprenticeship course and beyond. They will provide dedicated training to your employee, giving your apprentice the technical and non-technical skills needed to carry out the specific role you’ve employed them to do. Ultimately an apprenticeship training provider will set your apprentice up for success so your employee can make a real impact on your business. 

In this instance, you want to enrol an existing employee in an apprenticeship course. However, apprenticeship training providers can also help you hire an apprentice if you hope to increase your headcount.  

Here are some considerations to make and questions to ask your potential apprenticeship training provider: 

    • Are you a government-approved and funded training provider?
    • What courses do you offer? (make sure they offer the course you and your employee want to enrol on)
    • How does the Apprenticeship Levy work?
    • How long is the apprenticeship course duration
    • What support will you and your apprentice receive before, during and after the apprenticeship?
    • What is the on-the-job-to-classroom learning split? (for example, the apprentice may spend 80% of their week doing their day-to-day role within your company and 20% of training with the provider)
    • When does the apprentice start the course?
    • What qualification will the apprentice achieve?
    • Where is the apprenticeship training provider located? (do they cater to remote training?)

    Before making any drastic decisions, it’s worth speaking to a few providers to weigh up your apprenticeship options. Be sure to ask any questions and raise any doubts you may have - any good apprenticeship training provider will be happy to support you here.

    Benefits of Apprenticeships for Existing Staff

    Let's go back to our previous point. Suppose you need help answering the critical question, 'Why choose an apprenticeship for existing staff?'. In that case, the following reasons why apprenticeships are good options for your existing staff could help you answer the question. Discover some of the apprenticeship benefits for employees within your business.

    Your employees gain valuable work experience

    Whether you intend to move your existing employee into a new job or keep them in their current position, they will continue to gain valuable work experience when enrolling on an apprenticeship course. 

    Unlike other courses or training programmes, apprenticeship courses allow talent to learn and gain hands-on experience from on-the-job training. Additionally, they will continue to liaise and build relationships with their internal team, so their professional development will also grow due to their continued work experience.

    Top-quality training

    Additional benefits of apprenticeships for existing staff include the top-quality training they will receive. Along with on-the-job work experience, your existing talent will develop their skills through the education they receive from the training provider. The training your apprentice will receive will often take place during work hours but won't affect the productivity levels of your existing employee - again, be sure to ask your provider about the on-the-job-to-classroom learning split.

    Your apprenticeship training provider should be equipped with coaches who deeply understand your industry, ensuring your existing employee receives the tools and knowledge you require them to know for their specific job title. The top-quality training your apprentice will receive will also benefit your wider team. Your apprentice will be able to pass the valuable learnings they have gained from their apprenticeship training onto their colleagues, increasing the knowledge of your overall business. 

    Enhance your employee skill set

    One of the key benefits of apprenticeships for existing staff is allowing them to develop their skill set further. You should always be looking to enhance your employees' skills to ensure your business stays above the competition; apprenticeship courses are an excellent way of achieving this. 

    The skills your apprentice will learn on an apprenticeship, from real-life work experience to top-quality training, will help to fill the specific gaps within your organisation. Additionally, it will allow them to take up more challenging tasks, contribute to broader projects and ultimately become more valuable employees. An apprenticeship course will provide your existing employee with hard and soft skills, increasing their confidence and capabilities. When you have employees with more advanced skills, this can only be a positive for the future of your business.

    Apprentices receive an accredited qualification

    When your existing employee completes their apprenticeship training programme, they will receive an industry-recognised accredited qualification. 

    Apprenticeship qualification levels:

    • Level 2 - equivalent to a GCSE
    • Level 3 - equivalent to an A-Level
    • Levels 4, 5 and 6 - equivalent to a university degree
    • Levels 6 and 7 - equivalent to a master’s degree

    Of course, your existing employee will have gained valuable knowledge and tools by completing the apprenticeship. Still, they will also be forever grateful to you for investing in their career progression, allowing them the opportunity to receive an accredited qualification. Ultimately, enrolling your existing staff on an apprenticeship will do wonders for your staff retention rate and the loyalty of your current employees. 

    Endless apprenticeship options

    As mentioned, a vast range of apprenticeship courses are available in the UK, which is highly beneficial to your business as you look to find an apprenticeship for your existing staff. As apprenticeships cater to almost every industry, every job role and every skill set, you will find a training programme best suited to your needs.

    Of course, choosing the best solution with almost too many apprenticeship options can take time and effort. However, as we discussed, an apprenticeship training provider like Pareto is best placed to support you with this. 

    Discover Pareto’s Apprenticeship Courses

    If you are interested in enrolling an existing employee on an apprenticeship course, we can help. We have over 25 years of experience assessing, placing and training apprentices across various industries and professions. Our apprenticeship recruitment team will help nurture your existing talent, advancing their careers while helping to take your business to new heights. So find apprenticeships for existing staff with Pareto and realise your potential. 

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