Future proofing your business with an apprentice

It’s that time of year when young people have finished their exams and they’re planning what they want to do next.

It’s also be the ideal time for plumbing and heating companies to think about the future. From sole traders to bigger firms, for any business looking to grow, the biggest question is often how to go about it. Taking on new staff can be seen as a risk. How can you be sure they’ll meet your needs, and what if they don’t fit in?

The answer could be an apprentice. As an employer you get a new member of staff, selected to fit you and your company, who’ll be trained to meet your business needs. They learn on the job with you as they get the experience they need for their gas or plumbing qualifications. For one day a week they study in the workshops and classrooms of a training provider such as the Steve Willis Training Centres in Sussex and Hampshire.

It makes financial sense too. Apprenticeships are funded by government, which for a small business (under 50 employees) can mean that training costs are fully covered if the apprentice is aged 16-18, while most other businesses pay just a 5% contribution. And if your business is a levy payer, it’s a great way to ensure your levy money is well spent. In addition, the apprentice minimum wage is currently set at £3.90 an hour for apprentices aged 16-18 (and 19 if in the first year of their apprenticeship), and there are no Class 1 NI contributions for apprentices under 25.

Steve Willis Training works with employers throughout the apprenticeship process, from matching you to a suitable apprentice for your business to providing feedback and support throughout the training programme. It currently has a pool of fantastic young people in the Sussex and Hampshire region, assessed and ready to start their gas and plumbing careers. All they need is an employer.

If you think an apprentice could be the answer for your business, find out more by getting in touch with the Apprenticeships Team. They can answer any questions, and let you know how they can match you to a young person who’s keen to learn and ready to start this September.

Call Steve Willis Training on 01444 870860 / 02392 190190 or email apprenticeships@stevewillis.com.