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Do you want to find out more about JTL's apprenticeships and how to apply? Check out our frequently asked questions below...

What are the entry requirements?

Whilst most JTL apprentices join the industry at the age of 16 or 17, anyone can apply. However, you should be aware that there is limited provision over the age of 19 due to Government funding restrictions (except in Wales, where no funding restrictions apply).

There are no set academic requirements for an Advanced Apprenticeship, as they aren’t just based on academic achievement. To be eligible to start a JTL Apprenticeship, you must pass the JTL Entry Assessment, and not be in full-time education at the point of starting the apprenticeship. As a good indication of your suitability, it is likely that you will have or be expected to achieve four GCSE’s or equivalent at grade C or better, in subjects including Maths, English and Science.

What are the apprenticeship eligibility requirements?

JTL apprenticeships are for men and women aged 16 and over. But they’re not right for everyone. For example, if you’re colour blind, you have a fear of heights, or if you’re in the middle of your education, it might not be the thing for you. For those who do tick the boxes, our apprenticeships provide the training to take them into a career that could last a lifetime.

There are a few things you need to know before you set your heart on a JTL apprenticeship. They are:

  • You need to be aged 16 and over for your employer to benefit from support funding.
  • If you’re older than 19, your employer may need to put some of their own money towards your studies.
  • You need to have been a UK resident for the previous three years, or a national of any European Union (EU) country or European Economic Area (EEA) for the previous three years. This is unless you have an immigration status which exempts you from the three year residency requirement. Contact JTL for more information on this.
  • You can apply for an apprenticeship while you're still in education, but you need to have left before you can start with us. As a rule of thumb, you must have left compulsory education after the last Friday in June of the academic year in which you are applying.
  • You need an employer before you can start an apprenticeship, although you can apply before you’ve arranged one.
  • Unfortunately, you cannot apply for an apprenticeship with us if you have a degree qualification, or are on any current higher education programme.

Are there any obstacles to entry or completion of an apprenticeship?

JTL is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for everyone. Entry onto a JTL apprenticeship is not restricted in terms of gender, ethnicity or religious beliefs. We encourage applications from under represented groups such as women and ethnic minorities.

Colour blindness prevents entry onto all JTL apprenticeships except specific MES courses. Before candidates can be placed on JTL’s Approved Applicant List and be considered for training they must obtain evidence from an optician that they are not colour blind. 

Is it a job for a woman?

Yes. We actively encourage applications from women for all our apprenticeships, and support the female apprentices we do have to achieve throughout their training. Many female apprentices have been very successful, and we run a highly successful Female Ambassadors programme. 

What’s the pay like?

Candidates will be employed on a full time salary from day one. It is likely that you will be paid an hourly rate for the hours that you work. The exact amount will be up to the employer, but as a rule, it is usually no less than new entrants to work.

Most employers follow the pay scales set by the industry. For instance, companies that are JIB members pay rates set for their respective industries. These can vary depending on location, travel allowances and overtime. Pay increases are linked to successful advancement within training.

On completion of an apprenticeship, a qualified electrician, for example, can quickly be earning a basic salary of £17,000 or more. On top of this, overtime and allowances can increase this considerably.

When and where will I be paid?

Paydays are related to the administrative working week of the employer, but they usually fall on a Thursday or Friday. Employers pay the money directly into a bank account. Each time you get paid, you should get a payslip explaining how your wages were calculated.

What about income tax and deductions?

Like all employees, unfortunately, you will have to pay tax! Income tax, or PAYE (Pay As You Earn) is calculated when pay rises above a minimum level, known as the tax threshold, set by the Government. Once your earnings have reached this level, tax is deducted from wages on a weekly basis, via the PAYE system. Under this system, the employer will deduct the amount due, and pay it to HMRC (Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs) and, in so doing, ensure that tax is always fully paid up.

The employer is only allowed to make deductions from the salary for income tax and National Insurance contributions with prior consent. However, where relevant (e.g. pension plans, tool purchase, laundry schemes, etc.), as an apprentice, you may authorise employers to make other deductions from your wages, as required.

What hours will I work?

In most circumstances, the normal working week will be 37.5 hours, worked as five consecutive days from Monday to Friday. This 37.5 hours, divided by the 5 working days, equates to a working day of 7.5 hours that must be worked between the hours of 7.00 am and 7.00 pm.

There is then a total maximum time of one hour allowed in any one day for all meal breaks, including washing time, but this may be less at the employer’s discretion.

From 6 April 2003, the Young Worker’s Directive came into effect meaning that those who are between minimum school leaving age and their 18th birthday will not normally be allowed to work:

  • More than 40 hours per week;
  • More than 8 hours in one day;
  • Between the hours of 10.00 pm and 6.00 am (or 11pm and 7am if stated in the contract).

What do I do if I’m sick?

If you become ill or suffer an injury during your apprenticeship, and are unable to work, you must let your employer and JTL Training Officer know immediately. If you are unable to ring your employer, you should get parents, a relative or a friend to do it for you as soon as possible. Any payment for sickness will be subject to the employer’s policy.

What about holiday and paid leave?

Like all employees, you will be given at least 20 days paid holiday, plus time off for bank holidays, each year. The exact details will be written into the contract of employment and training agreement. You may also be able to take some time off for study leave, on top of the usual paid leave.

Is the work dangerous?

Health and Safety is taken very seriously by JTL. All employers and employees are covered by the Health and Safety Act 1974 (HASAWA), which places certain duties on the employer to provide and maintain safe places and systems of work. JTL assesses employers to ensure they meet Health and Safety criteria before apprentices begin employment with them. Health and Safety inductions will also be given to you, as an apprentice, at your college or training centre. 

Will JTL guarantee me a job?

No, unfortunately we can’t do that. Once you’ve been added to our Approved Applicant List, we will seek to introduce you to suitable employers who we work with, help you prepare for interviews and give you useful feedback if you are unsuccessful. However, it’s down to you as an individual to find a job. 

I’ve already got an employer; can I still start an apprenticeship?

Yes. As long as both the apprentice and employer meet our criteria, we should be able to fund and arrange training for you.

What will it cost me?

Your off-site training should not cost either you, as an apprentice, or your employer, anything. Providing it meets our funding criteria, JTL will cover the cost of all off-the-job training. 

When does the course start?

The training course starts on differing dates, usually from September to late October, depending on the region. JTL also operates a late entrance to some colleges, so we can start some training courses in January. If you read this at a date past those months, don’t be concerned. JTL could begin your apprenticeship at the point of sign up between JTL, yourself, and the employer. We would begin the work-based learning side of the course, and slot in your training course at the next applicable start date.

What happens after I’ve taken the Entry Assessment?

Once you’ve taken the Entry Assessment, all being well, and with all sections completed and passed, you will receive a telephone call from our Customer Service Unit at JTL. The telephone discussion shouldn’t take more than five minutes of your time, and the record of such will be added to your Entry Assessment profile. At this point, we can run through your application and ensure we have everything up to date, have received a verified your colour vision certificate, and have full (and correct) contact details. Once everything is completed, we can send on your details to an employer, should they request it. At this stage, we can also class you as an approved applicant, so if you have applied to a vacancy via apprenticeships.org.uk or direct.gov.uk, we can send over your whole ‘Profile Pack’.

When would I next hear from JTL?

You will keep in contact with JTL via some automated emails requesting you confirm your interest in the scheme, but in normal circumstances, our Customer Service Unit won’t be contacting you via the telephone again. However, we’re always happy to take your call on our Freephone number: 0800 085 2308, should you have any questions or concerns. You can also get in touch via the JTL website.

What if I have any Additional Learning Needs?

That’s fine with us, you can still make the application to JTL, and we’re sure you can still flourish on the apprenticeship of your choice. Firstly, make sure you tick the “I have additional learning needs section” on your application. If you do this, we will hold back the Entry Assessment. This is simply to ensure, if possible, we can assist you with extra time or some tips in making the screen / text work better for you.

Once you tick that on the system, we’ll ask you to call us at a time of your choosing, and we can chat through the amendments to the process with you.

If I’ve done the profile questions in the Entry Assessment. Why do I need the telephone discussion?

Basically, we’d like to speak to you! The questions are different, and so we’d like to hear some different responses from you. We also want for you to know who’s actually at the end of the phone. Our JTL Customer Service representatives speak to thousands of candidates each year, so we’d like to call you, find out what’s special and unique about you, and record it, so we can let potential employers know too.

I’ve already got an employer, and they’ve agreed to take me on. Why do I have to do any of the Entry Assessment or telephone discussion?

We’re just trying to cover all bases. Some employers will recruit on a temporary or trial basis, so we wouldn’t want to you hang your entire application on something that might not last. We’d prefer to have a back up. If you complete all of the Entry Assessment and the telephone discussion, should anything go wrong (fingers crossed it doesn’t) in your employment, all of the great stuff about you is there, ready & waiting to be passed out to another prospective employer.

When would I hear from the employer?

If you’ve applied to JTL for a specific vacancy advertised on the Government’s apprenticeship website, you’ll need to make sure all aspects of your JTL application are completed. Get in touch if you’re unsure. After the vacancy closing date, we will email you to confirm your details have gone to the employer – assuming we have all the right information and contact details for you. After that, it will be up to the employer, should they choose to get in touch with you.

Please don’t rely on one application for an employer or apprenticeship. Apply for the employers you can genuinely see yourself working for, and always make sure the pay, holidays, hours etc. are acceptable to you. JTL cannot comment on those, as we don’t get involved in the contract between employer (them) and employee (you), but you’re more than welcome to contact us if you wish.

Where should I start looking for an employer?

We’d always say make the most from online resources. The internet is your oyster! Current JTL apprenticeship vacancies can be found on our website, and we actively work with www.apprenticeships.org.uk and www.direct.gov. It’s also worth checking out www.yell.com, www.eca.com, www.hvca.org.uk, www.jib.org.uk, www.aphc.co.uk and http://www.ucas.com/progress.

Don’t forget to pay a visit to your local job centre and having a look in the local paper. It’s a tough industry to find work in, so we’d advise writing a good CV, and making sure you keep this up to date. If you want to send this out to employers (as well as upload to your JTL account), ensure you write a new cover letter with each application. Best of luck!

What happens with my Colour Vision Certificate?

Yes we know; you’ve already completed a screener online in amongst your Entry Assessment modules. JTL, as a training provider, adheres to certain industry standards, so to actually progress your application from this stage to becoming a live apprentice, we will need an optician to confirm your colour vision results. You’ll have to login to your JTL account and download our Colour Vision Certificate. It’s this one that we need an optician to complete, as it details our full requirements. We also need the original document returning to us. We’re not fussed about a colour or black or white copy, as we realise your printer might not cope with all the blue and yellow. However, it does need to be the original, and you do need to send it back to our administration centre, at:

JTL,
National Administration Centre,
Third floor, Redwither Tower,
Redwither Business Park,
Wrexham,
LL13 9XT

What is a consent form? What happens with it?

Surprisingly enough, you will need a fair few photos to get through an apprenticeship. For example, to be able to get on some work sites, you need a JIB ECS (Electrotechnical Certification Scheme) card, and for JTL to register you, we’ll need a photo. To fully complete an apprenticeship, you will need to complete job reports and fill in aspects of your log book with documentary evidence; that will require some photographs of you actually doing the apprenticeship work. We like to cover all bases and make sure you consent to us using and sharing these images with applicable parties. For these photos, we need you (and your parent or guardian if you are under the age of 18) to complete a Learner Consent Form prior to you becoming a live apprentice. You can login to your JTL account and download one. Once you’ve done that, please return the completed document to:

JTL,
National Administration Centre,
Third floor, Redwither Tower,
Redwither Business Park,
Wrexham,
LL13 9XT

What does JTL do?

JTL is a training provider. In layman’s terms, we deliver training. We are not your employer, and we are not your college tutor. We act a mediator between all aspects of your apprenticeship. The qualification we deliver is an NVQ – a National Vocational Qualification. Should you meet all of our entry requirements and we begin the course, we will assess you on site, help you collate your log book, portfolio and all site evidence. We will source and register you for your training centre placement. We will assess you in that training centre environment. We can act as a confidant should you experience any concerns, worries or doubts in either aspect of your training… or indeed in life itself. We will help you with Portfolio building sessions, AM2 refreshers, exam re-sits, and so on. We will evidence your progress, support you in any blips, and congratulate you on your achievements. Don’t get us wrong, we wont hold your hand while you do this, but we will be there as a rather persistent shadow!

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