This time of year always brings to mind the many youngsters who are taking exams and making decisions regarding their future once they leave school.

As a company, we have taken on in excess of 20 apprentices over the years which not only benefits the business but supports the future of our industry. We are very proud of the support and guidance we have given our trainees with many of them now fully qualified engineers and dedicated to delivering top quality service to our clients. We have also offered many work experience opportunities, and continue to do so, which shows our commitment to the construction sector and the younger generations in the local community.

Therefore, I would like to set out some tips and guidance for those about to embark on the next stage of their lives with a particular emphasis on young people who are interested in the electrical and mechanical industries.

I appreciate that it is many years since I was facing the very same scenario and that times have of course changed dramatically. However, many of the tips below are as relevant today as they have always been. I also want to reassure the younger generation that, although good grades from your exams are a great start, there are other areas we focus on when looking to recruit.

So here goes with some pre-employment pointers.…

  1. When applying, be sure to demonstrate a keen interest in the industry you have chosen. Do your research and gain a basic understanding of what duties the apprenticeship you are applying for entails. Find out the potential courses available, what exams/qualifications you will need to take and how the training programmes work. For those in the local area, I recommend enrolling with either JTL or Salisbury College. This demonstrates that you have passed any aptitude tests and have already been approved for training.
  2. If called for interview make sure you are au-fait with the information in Point 1 and anticipate the basic skills you would need to progress within the company. This shows initiative and don’t be afraid to talk to somebody in the company for some hints and guidance before you turn up.
  3. Within this sector, you are definitely going to need to be able to drive. Assure your prospective employer that you are committed to your lessons and taking your test as soon as is practical.
  4. Present a well-prepared CV that lists your achievements, interests and relevant to the sector itself. By all means enlist the help of your parents, peers and online tips but keep it personal and composed by yourself. We would like to get to know the applicant behind the CV and cannot do this if a generic one is presented and written by somebody else.
  5. Turn up in plenty of time, make an effort with your appearance and be courteous to the interviewer. We appreciate that you may be nervous but try and be yourself and take your time with your answers.

If you do secure your apprenticeship, I am assuming you will then want to impress in order to stay with the company once qualified. Do not rest on your laurels and bear the following in mind…

  • When you are working with the engineers, don’t just stand and watch. Ask questions, show an interest, and offer to help when you can. Don’t worry about checking your understanding, don’t feel you are being a burden because all our engineers were once in your shoes.
  • Take responsibility for your courses and exams- ensure you communicate with your college and the company and again ask for help and guidance where necessary.
  • Keep your paperwork in order. If you are asked to complete paperwork to gain access to sites for example, do so promptly, tidily and without the need to be chased. Organising yourself at an early stage will make sure you continue this discipline throughout your career.
  • Whilst I would never tell you how to spend or save your wages, think about setting aside an amount each week to invest in some of the tools you will need in the future. Again this demonstrates commitment and it is easier to do when you are living rent-free at home!
  • Finally, and this should really be a given, treat your colleagues and the company with respect. Show good manners such as keeping your phone where it should be, look after company property, be punctual and be willing to help others.

Above all, come to work with a positive attitude, enjoy it and I wish you every success as you embark on this exciting journey.


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