Now more than ever, due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, there are hundreds of jobseekers looking to upskill or learn a brand-new skill in a bid to boost their employment chances. It’s often confusing to find the right course, and both time and money can be wasted if the wrong course is chosen. Apprenticeships allow you to earn whilst you learn, giving learners a tried and tested route into employment or upskilling. Liam Sammon, Director of Learning and Innovation at JTL gives some guidance on how to make the right choice.
Leading training provider
Choosing an apprenticeship is a lifetime decision, so you want to ensure you’re picking the right place to learn. Since JTL was established in 1990, we have trained around 60,000 apprentices and are delighted to continue delivering high-quality learning across 100 centres throughout England and Wales. At JTL, we currently work with over 3,500 businesses with around 8,000 apprentices in learning and are seen as the leading national training provider for electrical and heating & plumbing apprenticeships.
We pride ourselves in offering a viable alternative to university study, providing excellent career prospects and earning potential. We are extremely proud that JTL is an OFSTED recognised ‘good’ provider and, as a registered charity, we reinvest every penny back into the training we offer.
Over the years, we have also introduced a number of initiatives including a free tool kit scheme, celebrated the achievements of JTL apprentices at our annual Apprentice of the Year awards, as well as supporting and giving back to the building services engineering sector by offering free, bite-size digital courses through our latest resource, Power Up.
After 30 years of training people, we are privileged to have been able to support and witness thousands of people reach their potential and progress in a variety of careers they love – with many of our training officers starting their careers as a JTL apprentice. You can read more stories from people like Kirsten, Shaheeb and Jordan here.
Considering your options
Deciding what you’re going to do after your GCSEs can be tough for many, but we’d always encourage young people to make their own decisions rather than opt to follow the crowd. We’d advise those looking at post-16 options to consider their skills, think about their long-term aspirations and to be honest about their strengths and weaknesses. It’s important to explore all the avenues and keep an open mind. Whilst doing this, we highly recommend that young people consult with their parents/ guardians to ensure that the options they are looking at are reputable, so to avoid any issues further down the line.
Don’t be caught out
The Covid-19 pandemic has intensified the UK labour market, with more people looking to change careers and retrain, which in turn has opened the door to fraudsters. Since the pandemic began in March, there has been a 70 per cent rise in job scam reports, according to SAFERjobs, a firm that helps jobseekers recognise real jobs and avoid scams. SAFERjobs estimates around 3,000 job seekers a month are falling victim to this with the average job scam costing UK work seekers £4,000.
Here are our top tips to help you know whether a career opportunity is real or a scam:
- Be cautious of being asked to pay for training in order to get a job.
- Be suspicious about poorly written communications and training materials.
- Be watchful of very generic job specifications or training course descriptions designed to enable anyone to apply.
- Be distrustful of pressure selling either when applying for a job or enquiring about training.
A trusted apprenticeship trainer, like JTL, will assist you in finding employment as part of an apprenticeship programme. At JTL, we not only carefully check which employers we work with, but we also make sure that all the vacancies are appropriate for the apprenticeship programme chosen.
JTL is here for you!
One thing JTL apprenticeships have in common is that they lead to jobs that are essential to our economy and give aspiring tradespeople a foot in the door, as well as an increased chance of securing a job in their chosen industry. Not only will trade roles be needed more than ever once the Covid-19 pandemic has passed, but apprenticeships will continue to address skills gaps whilst creating employment opportunities across countless sectors.
Every JTL apprentice is allocated a training officer who will help to guide and support the learner through their course. The training officer will assist the learner in securing an employment place and will continue to be on-hand to offer advice throughout their apprenticeship.
We offer a range of benefits for both apprentices and their employers:
- Free starter toolkit for apprentices in their first year*
- Free study books for apprentices to support with theoretical knowledge
- Support from a dedicated JTL Training Officer
- Access to our free recruitment service
- Practical training in fully equipped and supervised workshops
- Free advice and support from the Electrical Industries Charity
- Access to the JIB Registered Electrician Skills Development Fund
- A JIB UK-PHMES Apprentice or an Electrotechnical Certification Scheme (ECS) card
- Help accessing funds to support with training costs
- Ofsted have consistently awarded us as a Grade 2 GOOD Provider
- Our Regional and National Awards which celebrates high achieving apprentices
- Apprentices will gain a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card – to evidence they have the appropriate training and qualifications and are safe to work on construction sites.
- Opportunity to achieve Maths and English qualifications i.e. Functional Skills
*After a qualifying period of 3 months
You can apply for a JTL Apprenticeship at any time of the year. You can find more information about our courses on our ‘Apprenticeship Courses’ web page.