“Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough, so they don’t want to”

People today have multiple options in their careers, the pathway they want to take and the goals they want to achieve. A lot of the time they do not realise that an Apprenticeship is a great option not only to start their career but also a fantastic way of upskilling yourself and an excellent way to gain essential skills, knowledge, and professional qualifications to pursue a career.

Apprenticeships are valuable for individuals, but they are also highly beneficial for an employer. Whether you are recruiting an apprentice or you are upskilling an employee, it allows an organisation to build a learning culture from within and create a talent pipeline. Attracting the best candidates to the roles and reducing the skills gap of the individual and collective organisation. That pipeline allows a business to plan for the future, identifying talent within the organisation which can increase staff morale and in turn increase productivity and reduce staff turnover.

Apprenticeships have started to become a more widespread route for young people across Wales and the rest of the UK. According to a survey of young people by ‘Investors in People’:

· 62% said they wanted to do A levels or go to university.

· 16% said their school or college did not provide them with enough information.

· 11% said they had a reputation for being low-skilled pathways.

Apprenticeships have come a long way in a noticeably short time but opportunities like Learning at Work Week and events attended by Itec help with giving higher recognition and promotion of the route to allow people to take apprenticeship seriously and consider it a viable pathway in their career.

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” — Benjamin Franklin

The above quotes always stay with me regarding my own learning journey. I was one of those people that viewed apprenticeships the wrong way. I wanted to pursue A Level’s and University and did not even give Apprenticeships a second thought. By age 18 I had already dropped out of 6th form and had lost any motivation to go to university. I just wanted to work and earn money. It was not until I started with Itec in 2012 as a Sales Executive that I was able to find out more about the value of learning at work. In my time with Itec I have completed my Customer Service NVQ Level 3 and my ILM Management Level 4. These qualifications have been the building blocks to my progress and success.

I’ve now been with Itec for 10 years, and seeing people start their journey within an organisation with little or no experience, progress through continual learning and develop into senior operational roles, provides me with real job satisfaction. Knowing that I and Itec have made a difference in someone’s life in such a positive way.