Apprenticeship Advice For Parents
As university tuition fees rise, and relevant work experience becomes more important to employers, an apprenticeship may be the best way for your son or daughter to begin their career.
Unlike the academic nature of college or university, an apprenticeship offers all the responsibilities of a real job, alongside training and nationally recognised qualifications. Apprentices are also paid while they receive hands-on industry experience, allowing them to start to gain financial independence.
At Babington Group, we are passionate about connecting young people with opportunities where they can continue their education while taking their first steps into employment.
Some key facts about apprenticeships:
- Currently, more than 170 UK business sectors offer apprenticeship schemes.
- 90% of apprentices stay in employment after finishing their apprenticeship (including 2% self-employed).
- 82% of apprentices said their apprenticeship had improved their ability to do the job, while 79% said that their career prospects had improved.
What qualifications can they gain?
Apprenticeships can offer your child a wealth of different qualifications and training, from hairdressing to accounting. Take a look at our range of apprenticeships here.
Apprenticeships usually offer NVQs, often along with BTEC qualifications. Level 3 NVQ programmes offer the equivalent to 2 A-levels, whereas a level 4 qualification is often seen as the equivalent of a foundation degree.
Apprenticeships with Babington also offer functional skills certificates in literacy, numeracy, and ICT for those who need to improve in these areas.
What’s the difference between an apprentice and a trainee?
If your son or daughter has expressed an interest in going straight into employment in a specific industry after leaving school, then an apprenticeship is an ideal launching point. Apprenticeships usually last around 12 months, but may be longer depending on the employer and the level of qualification they will be working towards.
Apprentices work alongside experienced staff, gaining job-specific skills, nationally recognised qualifications, and a wage. They will also take part in work-related study to towards their qualification, usually held once a week.
Some young people need extra preparation before embarking on an apprenticeship, and a traineeship is an excellent gateway into plenty of industries. Traineeships involve work experience over an 8-12 week period, and also offer the opportunity to receive supplementary skills in maths, English, and employability if needed, with support from Babington’s expert tutors.
A traineeship is a great means for businesses to find brand new talent, so there may even be the possibility of an apprenticeship or employment with the same employer for the right learner.
Will they get a job at the end?
Gaining relevant skills, experience, qualifications and business etiquette in an industry setting is a great way to impress future employers. While there is no complete guarantee of a job after an apprenticeship, the figures are extremely encouraging. 90% of apprentices stay in employment, while 71% remain employed full time with the same company they apprenticed with.
Apprenticeships and traineeships provide excellent progression opportunities, whether the aim is to gain further qualifications, continue in employment, or even both at the same time. Those who start on level 2 programmes often progress onto level 3 higher, and afterwards level 4 advanced, apprenticeships. This means your son or daughter could start on the apprenticeship route as a school leaver, and come out as a highly qualified and experienced professional.
How much will they be paid?
Not only will apprentices avoid the worry of paying back student loans well into their 50s, but they will get paid to learn. The National Minimum Wage for apprentices between 16-18 (or anyone in their first year of an apprenticeship) is £3.40 per hour. All other apprentices are entitled to the standard National Minimum Wage for their age.
Level 2 apprenticeships often pay between £120 and £130 per week, but many employers choose to pay far more than this. Level 3 and 4 apprenticeship usually pay more, and employers often increase wages in line with skills, experience and qualifications.
While traineeships are unpaid, they can lead into brilliant paid opportunities like apprenticeships and permanent employment. With a foot firmly in the door, the opportunities are limitless!