Overcoming the challenges of apprenticeships during a pandemic

Hi, I’m Amber and I’m the Apprenticeship Co-Ordinator for TTI Apprenticeships, I oversee and process the enrolments for our apprentices, I am also responsible for forecasting funding and submitting the ILR uploads.

Walking into the world of apprenticeships at end of September has been an interesting and insightful experience and has posed challenges that I and the department have had to overcome. I have had to learn a lot in a short space of time, from apprentice eligibility, enrolment process through to funding rules. One of the main challenges in both starting a new role in an area completely new to me and completing enrolments is adapting from the office to home working.

How have we adapted to working from home when conducting enrolments?

There is no question working from home has had an impact on all aspects of enrolments for us whether that is getting paperwork signed. As we all know working from home has meant out diaries are filled a lot more with Zoom or Teams meetings, and this is something we have had to adapt our enrolment process to. I would say the use of Teams to conduct parts of our enrolment processes have been more beneficial to us, they allow us complete paperwork with the apprentice and explain in more detail about the chosen apprenticeship via a presentation.

The initial IAG conversation with the apprentice is something we believe is really important not only to give all the relevant information but also to make sure the apprentice is enrolling on to the apprenticeship that is right for them in terms of their career and making sure its timely for them personally.

Have businesses used apprenticeships during COVID?

During lockdowns, we have witnessed first-hand how apprenticeships have helped a range of businesses. Not only do apprenticeships give stability to current employees by giving them the chance to upskill themselves, but apprenticeships provide a sustainable and skilled workforce for businesses. During such an uncertain time, employers investing in their current workforce by putting them through an apprenticeship shows a resilient workforce who develop their skills and are competent in the job they are doing.

Also taking on an apprentice during this uncertain time you might think “how is that possible?” but employing a new member of staff with the knowledge that they are gaining all the skills relevant to that job role is very desirable to businesses now. Furthermore, we have had enquiries from businesses using the Kickstart Scheme to employ staff and would then like them to progress on to an apprenticeship to further their development.

If you would like any advice, are interested in taking on an apprentice or upskilling your workforce you can contact myself or the Apprenticeship Lead Tansy via..

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