What you need to know
- Apprenticeships are a combination of full-time work and accredited training.
- You will also earn while you earn. The current minimum wage is £3.50 for under 19s and first year apprentices, and £5.60 for 19 and 20 year olds who have been on an Apprenticeship for over a year. Some employers may choose to pay you more than the minimum wage.
- They are available in lots of different areas such as accountancy, catering, hairdressing, engineering and business administration.
- Apprenticeships provide you with training in the workplace as well as the general and technical qualifications you need to succeed
- They are available at different levels depending on the sort of work you are doing and what qualifications you have.
- If you want to gain the skills and experience that employers are looking for, you could try a Traineeship. These are work experience opportunities which also help you to improve your levels of maths and English.
- It is possible to go on to higher education courses after completing an Apprenticeship.
- Applying for Apprenticeship and Traineeship vacancies is done online through the Apprenticeships website. However, please be aware that some employers prefer to advertise locally through their own websites or newspaper advertisements.
Things to think about
- Apprenticeships are very competitive in certain sectors such as construction and plumbing and for large employers who offer excellent training and prospects.
- You will need to be employed by a company to do an Apprenticeship so you will need to apply for vacancies or find your own employer.
- If you are struggling to get an Apprenticeship, why not consider a Traineeship instead – these will give you the work experience and skills an employer is looking for.
- If there is a particular employer you want to work for you need to find out how they advertise their Apprenticeship vacancies.
- If you plan to go on to an Apprenticeship after school you should apply for other courses too. Getting an Apprenticeship is not guaranteed and so you should consider back-up options.
- If you are wanting to go on to higher education after an Apprenticeship, make sure you do some research into which courses you can go on to. There are options available, but only some universities will accept Apprenticeships as entry on to a degree course.
- You may be asked to provide your own equipment if it is important for your training – though you may be eligible for some financial help.
- Apprenticeships are a good way of getting qualified, but you need to be fairly sure that it’s what you want to do as your training and qualifications will be very specific to the job you will do.
- Register on the Apprenticeships website to find Apprenticeship and Traineeship vacancies suitable for you.
- Explore companies in your local area.
- Write a winning CV that you can give to employers – don’t forget to include a covering letter to ask about possible Apprenticeship vacancies.
- Ask families and friends to help you identify people and places you might approach to ask if they are recruiting apprentices.
- Find out more from your teacher/tutor in school or your CareersInc adviser.
- Complete the Apprenticeship checklist to make sure you have taken all the actions you need to.
- Find out about large employers in your area and what support is available to help you get an Apprenticeship by looking at local information.