Engagement, enthusiasm and commitment: the benefits of apprenticeships

If there was a way to bring enthusiastic, motivated, engaged, loyal people who have ideas and ambition into your business whenever you needed them, you’d grab it with both hands, right?

Of course you would. It would take the same amount of enthusiasm, motivation, engagement, loyalty, innovation and commitment from you, but it would be well worth the effort to have a workforce that fulfilled its potential – and enabled your business to do the same.

You’ll be glad to hear that there is a way: apprenticeships.

Taking on an apprentice – whether they’re fresh out of school and raring to start their first job or have a solid CV and are looking to take their career in a new direction – is a great way to build the skills your business needs to thrive. You can develop them in the way you want – enabling them to fill the roles that you need – while, at the same time, giving them valuable skills, qualifications and work experience.

By providing your apprentice with the kind of experience that excites them and gives them the tools to really make a success of their current role and future career, you’ll benefit as much as the apprentice will.

Not only will you have someone who is well on their way to becoming a vital practical asset to your business – filling an existing skills gap or ready to enter a talent pipeline to address future challenges – you’ll have someone who recognises and appreciates the investment you’ve made in them, and is prepared to give something back in return.

Apprentices who have a good apprenticeship experience are enthusiastic, motivated, engaged, loyal, committed and productive – and research backs this up. According to the government’s National Apprenticeship Service, 90% of apprentices stay on with their employer after their training programme has ended. And a Redshift Research survey of employers offering apprenticeships revealed that they think apprentices stay longer and are more committed to the business than other employees.

And that enthusiasm and commitment translates into concrete gains in productivity. According to the Centre for Economics and Business Research, the average apprentice increases productivity by £214 per week, while the NAS says that employers running apprenticeship programmes report a 76% improvement in their businesses’ productivity. Three quarters of employers report to the NAS that apprenticeships have improved the quality of their product or services.

Apprentices’ positive effects are being felt much further than their immediate workplace, too. Of those surveyed by Redshift Research, three quarters of employers actively promote their apprenticeship activity when pitching for new business or talking about themselves. A third would be more likely to partner with a supplier that also offers apprenticeships, and just over a third actively promote apprenticeships through their supply chains.

As if that wasn’t enough, the government also reports that for every £1 it invests in apprenticeships, £18 is generated for the wider economy.

What is key to achieving these positive outcomes is having a top-quality apprenticeship programme in place, delivering the right combination of workplace experience and learning that gets apprentices engaged and productive right from day one. At Knowledgepool, we have seen how important that is.

“It is really exciting to be able to put behind me the failures that have defined me until now, and instead focus on the future. I was desperate for a change in my old role and this opportunity came along at the perfect time. It is great having so much support from my manager, my new team, my employer and the course provider. They have all been very helpful,” said an apprentice on a programme that we helped to run at HM Passport Office.

Knowledgepool’s Client Director Emily Austin says: “‘Apprenticeships deliver proven organisational benefits. The evidence shows that apprentices are less likely to leave, are strong performers and more highly engaged. When you combine these outcomes with the fact that apprentices are trained to high professional standards, you see how apprenticeships can support organisations’ ambitions to deliver better and more efficient services to their customers.”

Without doubt, a well-managed apprenticeship programme that is part of a clear career path will reap rewards for all. Find out how we can help you to make it a reality in your business here.