Insights Talent Acquisition: Attracting New Talent with The Apprenticeship Levy
19 June 2019

Talent Acquisition: Attracting New Talent with The Apprenticeship Levy

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Every company wants to hire the best talent, and with the recruitment process costing both time and money, it’s becoming more crucial than ever to attract the right talent for the job.

Using a strategic approach to talent acquisition can reduce the need for future recruitment in some areas of a company and help to support an organisation's growth

The apprenticeship levy not only provides businesses with a way to upskill existing employees but also an opportunity to attract new talent. With over 80% of employers reporting that taking on apprentices has benefitted their business, apprenticeship programmes are a no brainer.

If your business is not yet making use of the apprenticeship levy, it may help to know that it’s now much simpler for larger companies to create tailored apprenticeship programmes. Plus, there are plenty of ways that apprenticeship schemes can benefit your business - not to mention the ways it can impact an apprentice’s future career.

Concerned that your company doesn’t have the resources to manage an apprenticeship scheme? With the help of a training provider like Seetec, you’ll have access to help with everything from apprenticeship recruitment to apprenticeship management.

To find out more about the benefits of introducing an apprenticeship scheme and how to attract new talent with the apprenticeship levy, continue reading...

Benefits of employing an apprentice with the apprenticeship levy

The Apprenticeship Levy is available to large UK organisations with an annual payroll of over £3m. While the advantages of apprenticeship programmes are many, there are still companies that are not making the most of the levy. From tackling skills shortages to acquiring fresh minds, here are some of the benefits of hiring apprentices:

Tailored apprenticeship programmes

Worried about the flexibility of apprenticeship programmes? We get it - every company works differently, so how can you be sure a programme will fit in seamlessly with your business? Fortunately, the apprenticeship levy can now be used to fund hundreds of apprenticeship programmes that can be tailored to specific job roles, making them flexible to the needs of your business.

New talent of any age

Whether you’re looking for fresh talent with some life experience or individuals with minimal experience to educate and develop, apprentices are ideal. Contrary to popular belief, apprentices aren’t all school or college leavers aged 16-18. Apprenticeships are open to individuals of all ages, meaning you have the opportunity to hire new talent of any age.

Tackle skills shortages

With over 400 apprenticeship standards now in place, the apprenticeship levy covers a range of job roles and sectors. Apprenticeships offer a great way of bridging skills gaps within a company as you can literally grow and develop your own talent. With apprenticeships available at a number of skill levels – from entry level to degree level - they provide a way of attracting new talent at various career stages. It’s also important to bear in mind that it’s not just about the skills your company needs at this specific moment in time, but the ones you’re likely to require in the future, too.

Fresh Minds

Companies often find themselves looking at issues with tunnel vision, which can prevent problems from being resolved, or result in the same ones arising time after time. Recruiting a team of apprentices will bring fresh minds and diverse opinions into your company, providing a new look at existing challenges, and different ways to approach them.

Eager to Learn

For most apprentices, the opportunity to learn their chosen trade within a team of experienced professionals is very exciting. The workplace is a different environment to a school classroom or college campus, and it's one in which most apprentices thrive. The new opportunity will have apprentices feeling enthusiastic and eager to learn from their superiors, absorbing as much information as they can. This injection of enthusiasm and positivity is something that can benefit all companies.

Reduce staff turnover

Apprenticeships are known for helping to reduce staff turnover by increasing employee satisfaction and loyalty. Apprentices are much more likely to become long-term employees of the firm that hired them, as it’s the place they learnt the ropes, grew and developed. If apprentices are given care and attention throughout their programmes, and career progression steps are available upon completion, they are more likely to become loyal, satisfied members of staff.

How to attract talent with the apprenticeship levy

Many businesses put off hiring apprentices due to the complexity of the process or lack of time and resources. But, the apprenticeship levy needn’t be a daunting subject. There are many things you can do as a business to attract new talent, and it doesn’t have to be a gruelling process. From identifying talent gaps to getting help from a training provider, here are some ways to attract new talent with the apprenticeship levy.

Identify Talent Gaps

Having an idea of the skills your business needs to achieve its goals can help to attract the right talent. Carrying out a skills gap analysis to determine the skills your employees already have against the skills still required is a great place to start. Apprenticeship programmes offer a way of attracting new talent and filling in these knowledge gaps to help reach your business goals.

Identify Useful Apprenticeship Standards

We’ve already highlighted the number of apprenticeship standards now available compared to when the apprenticeship levy was first introduced. These standards set out the skills required of apprentices and what their roles will entail. Once you’ve identified your company’s talent gaps, you’ll need to identify a selection of apprenticeship standards that’ll help develop the skills your business requires the grow. Your training provider can design apprenticeship programmes around these standards and tailor them to your individual needs.

Recruit the best talent

As mentioned previously, recruiting the right talent for the job is very important. Finding individuals that fit the bill and align with your company’s ethics can improve staff retention and productivity. Many training providers offer support with recruitment, as well as advice on how to utilise the apprenticeship levy. Seetec can assist with candidate attraction and screening, assessment centres and induction programmes, saving you time and money on the recruitment process while ensuring you get candidates with the right skills for the job. Some of the companies we’ve worked alongside and recruited for include Arcus (customer service), Hermes (LGV) and Breedon (LGV).

Implement a graduate apprenticeship programme

For many new graduates, finding a job after university can be challenging. With so much competition, it can be hard for even the most talented of individuals to get noticed. Graduate apprenticeship programmes offer university leavers a clear path to employment, a chance to gain skills and qualifications on the job, and the opportunity to learn from experienced professionals. Seetec supports life and pensions administration service provider Diligenta with its graduate scheme by delivering training and assisting with graduate recruitment. Throughout Diligenta’s two-year programme, graduates carry out placements in four different disciplines of the Transformation and Change function and achieve a nationally recognised qualification in project management.

Retaining talented employees and apprentices

Once you’ve taken the time to hire fresh talent, measures must be put in place to retain employees. From ensuring staff satisfaction to mapping out career progression pathways, these steps are just as important for retaining apprentices as they are existing employees.

Apprentice progression

Apprentices begin their journey full of excitement, enthusiasm and positivity. As an employer, it’s your job to ensure this eagerness to learn continues throughout their apprenticeships and beyond. Offering career progression and development opportunities is a brilliant way to retain talented apprentices. Plus, the apprenticeship levy offers the opportunity to continue developing your employees as they progress within your company. If you don’t offer these kinds of opportunities to your apprentices, you’ll likely lose your best talent to competitor companies that do.

Employee satisfaction

Retaining talented employees can be as hard as recruiting them. This is why it's important to check in with staff to make sure they are happy and ask whether there’s anything you can do to improve their job satisfaction. Too often these conversations happen at the point of no return. So, instead of leaving it until an employee hands in their notice, make these conversations a regular occurrence.

Core Values

We’ve previously discussed the importance of core values in the workplace, and how they should be called upon throughout the recruitment process. Using strategic talent acquisition tactics will ensure you hire apprentices whose core values align with your organisation’s. Acquiring talent with similar values will result in better staff retention as they have a greater understanding of why and how you make decisions.

Conclusion

Attracting new talent with the apprenticeship levy is simple. Plus, with the benefits apprenticeship programmes can bring to your business, you could miss out on some great talent if you choose not to make use of the levy.

Seetec can offer advice on the best way to use the apprenticeship levy, so get in touch to find out more.