What four things should you ask when picking an apprenticeship provider?
Choosing the right provider is fundamental in ensuring you get the ideal apprenticeship, and apprentice, that suits your business.
All apprenticeship providers are subject to Ofsted inspections – it’s definitely worth reading this information before approaching a provider. Just remember however – numbers aren’t the only thing that’s important.
1. Cost implications
What costs would be associated with an apprentice’s training?
What support is there for training costs and does this vary between programmes? Do you know if my business would be expected to contribute – and how much if so?
What other payments could be incurred? Would I have to pay for their travel, equipment or learning materials?
2. Facilities and equipment
What facilities could you offer an apprentice?
Do you offer specialist equipment and facilities to apprentices? Can I please have a tour of these?
Will I need to provide anything to complement this?
3. Training delivery
How would their training be delivered?
My business is quite specific; could the training be altered to suit my needs? Is it day release, or delivered on-site at my business? How much time a week would the apprentice need to study with you? Can I have a copy of the framework and assessment criteria?
How frequently would workplace assessments be? Can I choose when these are?
Can an apprentice start at any time of the year? How much time do you think their course will take up in a normal week?
How are you going to communicate with me as to my apprentice, and how they are progressing?
How much experience do you have in training apprentices?
How long have you been training apprentices and what is your success rate for my industry? How relevant is the experience of your training officers to my business?
Can I see some references from other employers?
How many apprentices do you normally support – and is there pastoral care available?
What is the recruitment process for apprentices?
What value added can you offer me? What sets you apart from other providers?
It’s so important that you gain a thorough understanding of the apprenticeship provider – after all they’re going to be working with you for the next few years! Ask to talk to existing or previous apprentices too to gain an insight into the experience your apprentice will receive.
Don’t be afraid to share your expectations too!