In general, most businesses see apprenticeship programs as an added liability. Sponsoring an apprentice can be costly and tedious for a business. However, despite a rise in popularity and proven benefits, apprenticeship opportunities for businesses aren’t fully understood and utilized by organizations.
Apprenticeships have a number of benefits that will provide a positive impact both for the apprentice and for the business.
The notion that offering apprenticeship opportunities for prospective employees will negatively affect a company’s output and productivity is a myth. On the contrary, a number of observations and studies have established the contrary.
A 2016 paper by CMI found that an average apprenticeship can improve productivity by as much as £214 per week. In addition, a study by the CEBR found that UK restaurants have the potential to gain £1.4 billion in additional revenue simply by employing apprentices.
If your organization is looking to find an upward trend in productivity and output, consider creating a traineeship program where you can hone new talents and get work done for less. Since fresh graduates are most often paid much less than experienced professionals, you can save on compensation expenses while getting more or less the same amount of results.
Addresses specific skill gaps
Organizations are only as good as the people who make it work, which is why in-house training and talent development continues to be a very important factor in skills development. Getting apprentices will not only allow organizations to create talents honed from within, it can also provide big rewards that can be reaped in the future. In the long run, it will help the organization save time and money in a rather complicated and tricky recruitment process.
In addition, since most small to medium businesses require highly-specialised skill sets, it will be more cost-efficient to develop skills among highly-enthusiastic trainees and apprentices. This will allow them to have a deep understanding of the process from the ground-up, which will prepare them should they join your company as an employee afterwards. Although training apprentices might require more time and attention at first, the advantages it yields is definitely far greater than its disadvantages.
Helps create new leaders
The experiences and expertise developed by your apprentices from day one could serve as building blocks toward a budding leadership career within your organization.
Don’t be too worried about losing home-grown talent through turnover. In the UK, a study found that 71% of apprentices were with the same employer with whom they completed their apprenticeship and that 75% expressed their willingness to stick with their current employer for another 2-3 years.
Landing and succeeding in a career with a foundation based on an apprenticeship is also common in the hospitality industry. In fact, chef and restaurateur Matt Moran, now renowned for his culinary expertise, started out his career as an apprentice. Apprenticeships definitely have benefits for both businesses and budding professionals alike.
Improves recruitment and reduces the turnover rate
One of the more obvious benefits of apprenticeship programs is that it has a positive effect on recruitment and turnover rates. For instance, Siemens USA gathers at least 50 percent rate of return from its apprenticeship program, more significant than hiring machinists off the street. Their graduates also make it easier for their plant managers to maximize the use of their plants because of their flexibility. In addition, apprentices were also observed to be more productive and that they were able to finish their work on time.
Creates a positive customer perception
Companies know all too well that a brand is vital in shaping how the public views its business. Offering traineeship programs for fresh graduates can actually benefit the brand.
The Benefits of Apprenticeships to Businesses study found that companies that offer traineeship opportunities were viewed by as much as two-thirds of the public as beneficial to the society. In the UK, this easily equates to 5 million consumers that are more inclined to transact with and purchase from a company that provides apprenticeship opportunities. Another fourth of consumers also showed interest in paying for premium goods and services from such companies.
Should your business decide to host apprenticeship programs, make sure to promote this across the board so your consumers, not just potential apprentices, are aware that you do offer opportunities. You can even leverage this as a CSR initiative, and incorporate it into your marketing initiatives.
These are just some of the notable benefits that have been studied and proven throughout different sectors and industries. Undoubtedly, training new talent and building their expertise from the ground up poses a number of positive effects that a business can potentially enjoy and will be mutually beneficial for fresh graduates alike.