Local employers invest in future
Two brothers left school, one went to university and did an Engineering Degree, the other did an Engineering Apprenticeship. The Apprentice received a wage while training and ended with an HNC [which he could upgrade to a degree with some further study]. He was very well thought of at his employer. His brother finished his degree but with student loans and debt and started at the same firm on the bottom of the ladder.
Many young people and employers now take apprenticeships seriously and it is gratifying when I meet Managing Directors and Senior Managers of firms locally who have started on the “shop floor” either as a trainee or apprentice.
It’s a positive and optimistic message for young people showing that it is possible to get to the top of the tree providing they have sufficient drive and determination. Local MP James Wild recently highlighted the importance of Education to young people in helping them realise their potential – I would argue that equally important are employment opportunities.
Many firms in Kings Lynn and North Norfolk have a proud tradition of investing in their people. This makes business sense and is good for individuals too. Investment in employees often starts with recruitment of trainees or apprentices – firms help individuals [normally young people] get into work and establish themselves in their careers. It also enables the firms to bring in new potential talent to the company and to train them and develop them for future roles in the organisation.
Apprenticeship Statistics for England show a decline in number of places offered [down 18% in 20/21 compared to 19/20] and this was reflected in North-West Norfolk 460 places were taken up in 19/20 compared to 610 in 18/19. No doubt this reduction is largely due to the Pandemic and will resurge again as businesses bounce back.
The National Apprentice week last week helped to highlight the benefits of apprenticeships to both young people and employers and we were delighted to welcome David Pomfret, Principle of the College of West Anglia to our office at Human Capital Department as he went “back to the floor” joining our fantastic apprentice, Jasmine Bentley, who is currently completing a Level 3 Apprenticeship in Human Resources (HR).