St Edward's Church of England Academy

Apprenticeships

What is an Apprenticeship?

It won’t be like work experience, you will be in a real job, where you will be employed by a company, get paid a salary and be entitled to paid holidays and sick pay. And, you will be working towards qualifications that are relevant to your job.

Over 121,000 under 19 year olds started apprenticeships last year, and on average there are up to 27,000 vacancies online at any one time.

There are over 800 different types of jobs you can do an apprenticeship in across 170 different industries, from law to graphic design, advertising to electric vehicle engineering.

It won’t be like work experience, you will be in a real job, where you will be employed by a company, get paid a salary and be entitled to paid holidays and sick pay. And, you will be working towards qualifications that are relevant to your job.

Over 121,000 under 19 year olds started apprenticeships last year, and on average there are up to 27,000 vacancies online at any one time.

There are over 800 different types of jobs you can do an apprenticeship in across 170 different industries, from law to graphic design, advertising to electric vehicle engineering.

There are apprenticeships available at all levels – whether you have no qualifications, GCSEs, A Levels, BTEC qualifications or a degree!

The level of apprenticeship you start at will depend on the qualifications you have, the job you are applying for, and the apprenticeship standard the employer wants to use

Apprenticeships are open to anyone aged above 16 years old who live in England, who is not in full time education.

Most apprentices do. The National Apprenticeship Service showed that over 90% of apprentices either get a job with the employer they completed their apprenticeship with or go on to find  another job with a different employer.

The minimum you can earn if you are under 19 years old is £4.30 per hour which works out as £159.10 for a 37 hour week of work and training.

When you are over 19 and past your first year of your apprenticeship the rates of pay are higher.

The average pay for a Level 2 or 3 apprenticeship (equivalent to GCSEs and A Levels) – can be higher, because some employers pay above the basic rate.

The length of an apprenticeship depends on the qualification being obtained and the type of job role. For example, a Level 3 business administration apprenticeship can take 18 months, whilst an engineering apprenticeship could take 4 years to finish. Generally apprenticeships take between one and four years to complete. For anyone between 16 and 18, the minimum duration is 12 months.

As well as learning ‘on the job’ at work, you will also be given time to train ‘off the job’.

  • On the Job Training – is in the work place with your employer. You will develop your skills by working with colleagues who will show you how to carry out certain tasks.
  • Off the Job Training – is when you learn away from work, often at a local college supported by your training provider.

Your training provider provides an important role in delivering your ‘off the job’ training by attending regular reviews with your employer and assessing your progress towards your qualifications. It might be that you use a computer to access online learning or you might go to college or a training centre one day a week or on a block for a few weeks at at a time.

You will need to make sure you are managing your work and studies. This means you’ll be developing your organisational and time management skills alongside your work skills.

You can have a look at this short film to find out more about apprentices’ experiences here in the South of England

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s0fcP0QgtGE[/embed]


Finding an apprenticeship

Follow this step by step approach to finding your apprenticeship.

One ►

Can you do an apprenticeship in the job you want – and what level is the apprenticeship?

Start by finding out if the apprenticeship standards exist for the career area you are interested in and what level you could start at.

Every type of apprenticeship is graded at a certain level and this affects the entry requirements.

For some apprenticeships everyone has to start at a Level 2 no matter what level of qualifications they already have – for example in hairdressing –  everyone has to learn how to wash and dry hair before moving on to cutting.

For some Level 3 jobs you may have to work unsupervised, so if you haven’t had much experience of work so far, you may start on a Level 2 before moving on to the Level 3. Most apprenticeships have pathways for you to progress, but it depends on the job, so you do need to check what opportunities there are for progression

Two ►

Are there any apprenticeship vacancies available in the career you want?

You can do this by looking at the Apprenticeship Search Tool in Unifrog. You can add any you like to your profile, but if you want to apply you need to go to the vacancy page.

Three ►

Go to ‘Find an Apprenticeship’ on the government site.

Nearly all apprenticeship vacancies are listed on the government site.

It is a good idea to ‘create an account’. 

By registering you can set up alerts for the types of apprenticeships you are interested in, in a specific location and set up text and email alerts to let you know when a new job is on the site.

You can also use the site to apply for apprenticeship vacancies and keep track of your applications.

The government has created a new website Amazing Apprenticeships with lots of useful information and help in finding apprenticeships. See what apprenticeship vacancies are coming up soon with big international companies like Google.