Partnership - Beever and Struthers - Apprenticeship
In this next installment in our interview with Beever and Struthers about their perspective on apprenticeships, the focus is on some of the challenges faced by both apprentices and employers.
How quickly do apprentices get used to the cut and thrust of the business and how it works? Do they hit the ground running or does it take a while?
It takes a while, but it takes a while with the graduates as well. Probably about three months on average. We have had issues in the past of trying to knock the school mentality out of the apprentices. And some of the graduates too, for that matter.
Having come from the environment of either school or university where they are not doing a 9-5, or are not in every day, having to come to a working environment where being on time is very important, as well as working a full eight hour day, and then studying to do on top of it, some of them struggle a little bit, just getting their heads around the fact that it’s not quite as laid back as college and uni in some respects.
They need to have the self drive to do a full 9-5…
Colleges suggest 20 hours of study a week at the time of exams, so not exactly for every week of the year, but it becomes a long week when you are either used to doing 16 hours of lectures and a lot of reading, maybe, or being motivated by teachers. That is why it can take a while to adapt to such a new way of doing things.
Possibly a slight difference we see in the two groups (with exceptions) because the school leavers are joining us at an earlier age, there is kind of a lot more parenting that we have to do. We deal with a lot of issues and problems that we probably shouldn’t have to, because they are a lot younger and are not used to a real working environment, so you will sometimes get people who wake up with a bit of a sniffle saying they can’t come into work, because they are used to how school is run.
Graduates have that little bit more independence, because they have lived away at uni, but the downside to that is that they don’t have solid routines. Whereas school leavers have still got their own parents behind them, pushing them more from a discipline point of view.