Why apprenticeships have been underrated
By Julie Shorrock – managing director, HTS
There has been loads of talk about apprenticeships for the meetings business travel and event sectors in recent years. But I still think they’re underrated, with many in our market not taking them seriously.
The leaders of the future won’t all come from universities, ready to hit the ground running, with gap year experience. And there are so many hard-working young people searching for their chance to break into the career of their choice, without the qualifications and experience to help them.
So, at HTS, we’ve taken matters into our own hands. We regularly work with the careers departments of our local colleges when we have full-time vacancies available. And we’re now using those channels to fill a vacancy we have for an apprentice to join our team.
You can’t underestimate the level of attractiveness as an employer that it gives you by working with local colleges. It demonstrates a commitment to your own business and to young people looking for a head start.
And while the industry is making gains in industry specific courses and apprenticeships, we greatly value Business Administration and Customer Service apprenticeships - both are appropriate and cover the aspects of our business and activities for supporting our clients.
The new opportunity has led to a greater investment of time into our local community too - boosting our reputation as a ‘good employer’, and setting a great example of giving back. In fact, we were recently invited to share our advice (and vacancy) at an event arranged by Heart of Worcestershire College in Redditch.
Our main message to students in attendance was on improving their employability; how to make themselves stand out and be the one we should want to employ.
But our message to the industry is to make yourselves a ‘local employer of choice’. Getting involved in local communities and apprenticeships is one of the few opportunities we hold to sustain our industry, our expertise, and the availability of talent in the future.