Over the years, apprenticeships have undergone a massive overhaul. They are now heralded as a viable solution to overcoming the UK’s ever-growing skills gap. One of the main reasons that prevents an employer from utilising this popular training and development option is some common misconceptions that surround apprenticeships. This article debunks the top 5 apprenticeship myths that surround apprenticeships.
- Apprentices are only for 16-19 year olds
The first myth we need to bust is the fact that apprentices can be any age. In fact, according to the House of Commons Briefing Paper, 41% of the apprenticeships started in 2017/18 were by people over the age of 24 and a further 30% were started by those aged between 19 and 24, meaning that 71% of apprenticeships were started by people aged 19 or over. In 2016/17, 75% of apprenticeships were started by those aged 19 or over.
Anyone of any working age can start an apprenticeship, including those who are already in employment or those looking to return to work.
- Apprenticeships aren’t available for existing staff
Another common misconception is that apprenticeship training isn’t available for existing staff. This is definitely a myth! With larger employers now paying an Apprenticeship Levy, this is a cost-effective way to upskill your staff. Upskilling your staff can help to eliminate any skills gap within your teams, as well as motivate and retain your existing workforce.
Contact NTG Training today about maximising your Apprenticeship Levy by upskilling your staff.
- 20% off-the-job training is inflexible
Although apprentices need to spend 20% of their time on off-the-job training, this doesn’t mean endless visits to a classroom. Our courses are delivered using a blended approach that makes it as flexible as possible for both the apprentice and the employer to work it around existing work commitments. NTG use a blend of online training, webinars, face-to-face tuition (from your offices) and practical hands-on lessons so that it doesn’t have too much impact on your day-to-day business.
- Apprenticeships are only available in manual industries
Historically, apprenticeships were seen as a route to take directly after leaving school that balanced relatively low-paid work and the chance to bolster your skills. This usually involved manual industries such as warehousing, hairdressing and construction. Today, apprenticeships are available in almost every industry, with health, business, engineering, retail and construction being the most popular sectors for new apprentices in England last year.
There is also a high demand for people wanting to learn digital marketing skills, and with the rapid advance in technologies there has become an urgent demand for digital talent which has resulted in a knowledge gap for many businesses. Our Digital Marketing Apprenticeship Level 2 & 3 is one of our most popular apprenticeship training programs.
- Apprenticeships are only for lower skilled workers
With a widening skills gap in the UK, higher apprenticeships are available that go up as far as degree level, so are definitely not just for lower skills workers.
There are three levels of apprenticeships, which each lead to different levels of qualification:
- Intermediate – equivalent to 5 GCSE passes
- Advanced – equivalent to 2 A-level passes
- Higher – lead to NVQ level 4 and above or a foundation degree
So if you didn’t go down the university route, you can still gain a degree through an apprenticeship regardless of your age, education experience and employment status.
Want to find out more about our flexible apprenticeship training? We can help advise on the right apprenticeship training program to match the skills you need to see your business grow. Contact us today for an Apprenticeship Consultation.