If you’re looking for an entry to employment or are thinking about a career change, apprenticeships are a great route. As an apprentice, you get the opportunity to gain practical on-the-job experience while also working towards a formal qualification.
What is an apprenticeship?
Apprenticeships combine employment with studying. You’ll be employed by an organisation who will give you training on the job, while also studying for usually one day a week at a college or university.
During your apprenticeship, you’ll be earning a salary and will be considered an employee of the organisation, meaning you’ll be covered by contractual rights such as holiday leave, maternity or paternity leave and sick leave.
Apprenticeships are aimed at 16 to 24 year olds, however there’s no age limit on becoming an apprentice, especially if you want to change career path.
There are four different levels of apprenticeships:
- intermediate (level 2, equivalent to GCSE)
- advanced (level 3, equivalent to A level)
- higher (level 4 and 5, equivalent to a foundation degree)
- degree (level 6 and 7, equivalent to a bachelor’s or master’s degree)
There are thousands of different apprentice roles available in a range of different industries, ranging from manufacturing, healthcare, construction, to marketing, law, project management and much more.
How to find an apprenticeship
The easiest way to find apprenticeships suited to you is by searching on the Government’s website. You can search by keyword, location and apprenticeship level.
Further support in finding an apprenticeship is available from the National Careers Service.
You could also approach a particular employer about being an apprentice at their organisation directly. Major employers and recruitment agencies usually advertise apprenticeship vacancies on their websites, normally on their recruitment or human resources page.
If you can’t find any information on their websites, you could try contacting their human resources team. Employers can apply for funding if they decide to take on an apprentice.
You can also look on job boards such as:
What happens once I finish an apprenticeship?
After you finish your apprenticeship, you could be kept on with your employer. As they have trained you, they will know your skill set and positive attributes. Alternatively, you could apply for a role with a different employer as you now have the right experience and qualifications.
Still have questions and need further help finding an apprenticeship? Check if you’re eligible for employment support from Work Well.