Do recruiters need to take the lead on championing apprenticeships?


Apprenticeships aren’t on the radar for the majority of school students.

That’s the main takeaway from a recent study conducted by trendence UK, which reveals that university remains the clear preference among school age students.  

The study shows that 70% chose to apply to university, while fewer than 10% were determined to do an apprenticeship.

This incredible bias for a university education persists even though the Government’s Apprenticeship Levy was introduced 6 months ago.

Perhaps it’s too soon to judge the success of a measure designed to create an additional 3 million apprenticeships, develop vocational skills and increase both quantity and quality across the board by ensuring employers who put more in to get back more? But is putting the onus on employers the answer?

Conversely, media reporting on the trendence UK study are asking if schools are doing enough to advise their students effectively about the increased range of opportunities available.

This is an interesting angle when you consider a surprising result of the survey: that almost one third of students made the decision to attend university while still at primary school.

Trendence UK, a leading student-focused research company, canvassed 12,800 students across the UK about their experiences and thoughts on career planning, university and work.

Their survey shows that 52% of students started researching employers in year 10 and 11, while 36% decided on a career route in year 12.

David Palmer, trendence’s UK research manager, believes that by this stage, the potential influence of careers information is diminished and the notion that university is the default path is already well established.

Just 18% of students asked reported being given enough information to make a decision on taking an apprenticeship.

Meanwhile 55% of students said that the amount of apprenticeship-related advice and information they’d received was ‘not much’ or ‘none at all’.

With the survey also reporting that 44% of students are not satisfied with the amount of advice available, and 77% of those choosing university saying that they would be open to changing their mind given the right incentives, there are considerable opportunities for those recruiters willing to back their Apprenticeship offering and appeal to students with real potential at an early stage.

Virginia Isaac, Chief Executive of Inspiring Futures and president of the Career Development Institute, confirms this: “Employers are also integral to increasing interest in apprenticeships. It’s important that especially those struggling with an adequate pipeline of applicants for their school leaver programmes ensure that they work with schools and share the responsibility of providing the full picture of career prospects."

Find out how KPMG did – and increased their Apprenticeship hires by 40%


Tuesday, 19 September 2017

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