Celebrate National Apprenticeship Week

Successful organisations know apprentices are not just for the likes of Alan Sugar, they are a valuable part of any workforce. National Apprenticeship Week 2013 (11-15 March) is a time to spread the word about what they do for your business and inspire other young people to consider taking the plunge.

British Gas train over 1,000 apprentices a year through six academies. They are an essential part of the team – helping to meet customers’ business energy needs and to understand and get the most from their energy supply.

This March British Gas is helping to celebrate National Apprenticeship week. If your organisation has apprentices, then you should too. There are lots of ways your business can get involved:

Job swap

You invest in training your apprentices, so you want them to stick around. To make sure this happens, they need to be excited about a future with the company. So, why not get a senior manager to switch roles for the day? That way the apprentice gets to see how far their training could take them.

Get schools involved

Teenagers need to know what opportunities are out there for them. Invite a teacher and some year 9-11 pupils to come and shadow some of your apprentices. Alternatively you could visit the school with your apprentices to talk about the opportunities available. Inspiring the Future – who facilitate talks across all sectors in schools and colleges – can help you to organise this type of event.

Showcase and celebrate their talent

You know your apprentices are a talented bunch, so let them show off! Enter them into World Skills UK national competitions which will give them the chance to be named ‘best in the UK’ in their area. They could even be invited to represent the UK at international competitions.

Host an event

Not all businesses realise what an asset apprentices can be. Take the lead and invite companies in your network to see how apprentices have contributed to the workforce. A ‘Made By Apprentices’ open day with a tour of the company can be really inspiring. Make sure there’s time factored in for mingling so that people have a chance to talk to former and current apprentices.

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