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Four quick tips for recruiting an apprentice


There are lots of benefits to hiring an apprentice. Here, we provide you with four tips on how to find a good fit for your company.

From May 2017 the apprenticeship levy will have officially been introduced, which has been created with the aim of delivering three million apprenticeships by the end of parliament 2020.

The economic impact of the levy is anticipated to be positive, with profitability increasing for businesses as a result of its introduction.

Yet, for many employers, recruiting apprentices is a whole new ball game. With this in mind, has put together four quick tips to help recruiters target and employ the best talent for their apprenticeship positions:

TIP 1. Look for traits and potential, not qualifications

Employers can sometimes look for higher levels of skill and work readiness than young people will typically be able to offer at this stage.

Throw away the traditional application form process and ask applicants to provide experiences for how they have handled similar scenarios that they will face in the role you’re recruiting for. These responses will often be far more telling and you'll get a much better feel for whether they'll be a good fit.

Additionally, employers are being given an allowance of £15,000 by the government to fund new apprenticeship schemes in their company. Apprenticeships are a great way for young people to be continuously nurtured and developed through professional training - so don't be put off by a lack of experience.

TIP 2. Start on the same page as each other

Most young people have never been through a formal recruitment process before and their experience of a working environment is limited, if they have any at all. Their expectations of working conditions and salary can therefore be a little green!

The employer must first establish;

  • What their own expectations are for the role
  • How the apprentice will add value to the company daily
  • How they will be able to contribute to the company on a long-term basis.

Once this has been agreed internally, relay these requirements in a completely transparent job specification to tackle any misaligned expectations from the offset.

TIP 3. Reassure them that they'll be valued

The National Apprenticeship Service website states that 96% of employers report benefits to their business and 72% of businesses report improved productivity as a direct result of hiring one. Your job specification will be more attractive to high-quality applicants if it can show that the apprentice will be an important member of your team, and not just a dogsbody!

TIP 4. Start making future talent aware of your opportunities now

There is a lack of education around apprenticeships, which unfortunately, means there is a lot of misconceptions around them. CIPD explains this issue well:

“Parents are misguided in what they think is involved in an Apprenticeship. They don’t value [them] because, back in their day, Apprenticeships were at £1 an hour and would do manual labour.

Another issue is with the lack of support available to young people to decide on those career pathways. Patchy career advice in some schools has left many pupils uninformed about Apprenticeships as a pathway into full-time employment. Furthermore, incentives for schools to keep their learners in sixth form have contributed to a perception of Apprenticeships as a pathway best suited for those who are deemed to be unlikely to succeed in a school environment.

I think we could do a lot more – all providers, the Government, everybody – to raise the profile and get the parents and schools to buy in and engage.”


Why is more than just a jobs board - is a resource that young people can use to bridge the gap between education and their career. 

Talk to us about your apprenticeship recruitment needs and we’ll show you the best way to promote them to the 250,000 school leavers that use our site as a resource. Visit: today.