So, you’ve made hires for your apprenticeship programme. The candidates which have made the cut will now be working at your company. How can you make sure they stay?
Most likely to be the first role the apprentice has been in – they will have had little to no experience of working in business. With the increase in students opting for the apprenticeship route, and with more companies offering programmes, it’s important to understand that attraction is only half the battle.
Here are our top tips to help you retain your apprentices throughout the course of their apprenticeship programme and to help you improve on apprenticeship retention.
- DELIVER WHAT YOU PROMISE
A key way to make sure that your apprentices want to stay is to deliver.
Many organisations make the mistake of overpromising and under-delivering – whether this is for apprentices, experienced hires or graduates – so, if you cannot guarantee an opportunity, then you shouldn’t use it as a way to draw in talent.
If the apprentice programme does not match up to what you have promised, you will end up with demotivated or even frustrated trainees who will start searching for new opportunities elsewhere.
- BE RESPONSIVE
Whilst apprentices are a great source of future talent , it is highly important to create a nurturing work environment for them to grow and develop in. Since they have no experience of working previously, it is up to you to create an open flow of communication and be responsive.
What we suggest is designing a personal development plan and having regular catch-ups. This allows opportunity for the trainee to raise any issues or concerns and provide a chance for you to tackle the problem with an achievable solution.
- STAY COMPETITIVE
With competition for apprentices growing every year, it is important to understand how your organisation stands out from competitors. Do not be afraid to find out why your apprentices joined you in the first place. Why?
Understanding why gives you the knowledge of what it is you need to do to make sure the passion they initially had does not burn out. In addition to this, regularly measuring the success of your scheme against competition should drive your business to be more efficient.
Often overlooked, a vital reason as to why candidates opt for the apprenticeship route initially is the promise of progression. The potential to be at a certain status or earning a certain salary by a certain age is incredibly attractive for apprentices. Whilst they understand the importance of hard-work, apprentices are the self-starters, ambitious and keen to start learning and earning on the job. This should not stop once they complete their programme.
Near the end of their programme, it has proven to be really useful and effective to identify the successes and drawbacks of the scheme with each apprentice, but also to create a long-term plan for their progression. This actively demonstrates the value of their role, and how you would like to assist them in developing the skills and attributes needed to take their career to the next level.
There we have it – our top tips on apprenticeship retention and retaining your apprentices. Underlying all the key elements of creating a successful apprenticeship programme is to understand their motivations to work and what they want to achieve. By doing so, you can create a successful formula to ensure that, when you invest in apprentices as future talent, you will be able to retain them for many more years to come.
Please contact us through our website earlytalent.careers if you would like to know more about apprenticeship retention!