As National Apprenticeship Week kicks off, we wanted to share our thoughts and experiences on tapping in to - and nurturing - this vital talent pool. It’s no secret that the industries we work with have long faced skills shortages and, as a result, encouraging more school leavers in to apprentice schemes has been a focus of many of the employers we work with. In fact, this subject has appeared in numerous of our recent blogs. However, it’s not just the likes of construction, rail or nuclear that can benefit from engaging these individuals – apprenticeships are needed in recruitment too.
Apprenticeships in recruitment
There’s long been a stereotype of recruitment as a job for those with ‘no other option’ or a career people simply ‘fall into’. We wholeheartedly disagree with this image and know that the industry has a wealth of career opportunities for people of all backgrounds and with a multitude of hopes and dreams.
That’s why here at Samuel Knight we’re keen to buck the trend and really demonstrate why recruitment can be a career of choice for those individuals seeking a challenging job that enables them to grow and develop as a professional.
Here’s what one of our recent apprentices – Alana McGory – had to say about making the most of these schemes:
How long have you been with Samuel Knight?
I joined the team over a year ago now, towards the end of 2017.
How did you hear about the opportunity?
I went through an apprenticeship agency and Samuel Knight International was the first interview I received. I got a job offer the very same day and decided to snap up the opportunity!
What made you choose an apprenticeship over other employment and training options?
I tried A- levels but I knew after the first year that it simply wasn’t for me. I wanted to enter the working world in quite a short space of time but also receive a qualification from it, so an apprenticeship seemed like the perfect route into employment for me.
How have you found it so far? What have been the benefits to you?
Despite this role being my first job, I’ve been given access to some great opportunities and jumping into a fast-paced growing business has allowed me to adapt and learn quickly. I have received training from senior management, had exposure to all areas of the business and benefitted from the warm environment here.
Describe a typical day in your role
I am the first point of administration contact across three offices so each day I manage telephone enquiries from customers, clients and suppliers in order to support the sales and management team. I also handle compliance for all Safety Critical workers in the UK which, although a huge responsibility, is something I was willing to take on as compliance has always been of interest to me.
What training / development do you have access to both in Samuel Knight and externally?
I received training at the beginning of the role which has continued throughout my apprenticeship. My tutor also comes in every six weeks to go through my external work. Everyone here at Samuel Knight is supportive, from answering any questions I may have to going through systems and processes so I’m learning new things all the time. I have built a trusting relationship with the management team as well as the sales consultants which has been hugely valuable to me.
What would your advice be to anyone seeking apprenticeship opportunities?
I’d say it’s important to research the right agencies and companies who take on apprentices. If you have the opportunity for an interview make sure you research the business in advance and create a great portfolio with all achievements you have made to demonstrate why you’re the right person for their organisation. Remember you are at a business to learn and develop so grab every opportunity to grow as a person as well as further your career. Take in all your surroundings, get a feel for the working world and the sector you decide to take on. Ask lots of questions and just think of it as a journey which will be a stepping stone to your future.
For more information on career opportunities at Samuel Knight, click here