Apprenticeships: Building a Winning Team

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Apprenticeships: Building a Winning Team

On 17th June Cranfield University Technology Park hosted a free seminar at its offices, looking at how small and growing businesses could benefit from apprenticeships and traineeships to build their team.

Top Tips

The South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnerships’ (SEMLEP’s) Anna Morrison was joined by WSRS’s Charlotte Walsh – a former apprentice herself at the recruitment firm – to explain how the apprenticeship and traineeship programme works.

The event presentation is available to download here and in addition, these are our top tips from the event which are available to download here.

Apprenticeships for the Future

  • The Government plans to create 3m new apprenticeships over the next five years, open to all ages over 16 years
  • It’s all about working and learning at the same time – meaning that an apprenticeship could even suit existing staff looking to upskill for a new role
  • Apprenticeships aren’t just for manufacturing or engineering! Today’s programme covers everything – from accounting to warehousing
  • Apprenticeships have huge proven benefits for firms, with 90% of apprenticeships staying after completing their programme

How it Works

  • Different levels are available, with an Intermediate Apprenticeship through to a Higher or Degree Apprenticeship
  • The expected duration of an Apprenticeship should be for a minimum of 30 hrs per week
  • Apprenticeships can be on a fixed term or permanent contract, and include all the normal benefits of employment including sick and holiday pay
  • The educational element can be flexible – ranging from 100% workplace learning to day release or block training by a service provider


  • There is a separate minimum wage for Apprentices, which will rise to £3.30 per hour from 1 October 2015. However, employers are encouraged to pay a ‘living wage’ appropriate to the area and role
  • Employers also contribute to training costs for over 19 year old apprentices – dependent on the the age of the apprentice and the training provider
  • The Apprenticeship Grant for Employers (AGE) for up to £1,500 per role can be applied for against the cost for an apprentice from 16-24 years old, with receipt after approximately 20 weeks. More information about the AGE grant can be found here


  • Established in 2013, traineeships are for 16-24 year olds, providing a bridging programme which can feed into an apprenticeship
  • A traineeship could be for 6 weeks to 6 months and will contain a high-quality work placement with an employer. There is no commitment to take a employee on permanently. However, it is required that employers offer a interview experience as part of the programme