Norland apprentices work predominantly at our client sites learning alongside existing staff. They are based across the business and have always formed a key part of our succession planning process.
Due to the importance we place on this group, we carried out a review of our apprenticeship scheme this year which has led to some significant additions to the scheme.
Firstly we reviewed how we support our apprentices. It was recommended that we select and train mentors from other business areas to give our apprentices an independent member of staff to learn and receive guidance from. This is in addition to the Apprentice Manager and Training Manager who remain in regular contact with them, supporting their development and monitoring their progress.
As well as their college education and regular Norland training we have enhanced our apprentice training with a new ‘outward bounds’ development and activity session. This is used to build team skills and improve problem solving and decision making through activities based out-doors. This two day event is carefully supervised by a team of specialists as well as the Apprentice and Training Manager and has given our apprentices skills and experience that they cannot receive in a work environment.
We will be introducing an "Action Centred Leadership" workshop for our final year apprentices. This is a classic model that will introduce them to basic team leading skills, motivation, task objectives and communication that would be a useful pre-cursor to more in-depth team leader courses such as our ILM Level 2 programme.
Finally, working through the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM), we intend to give all apprentices access to the advanced driving course. Statistically, young people are amongst the most vulnerable on our roads and this we believe to be a very worthwhile and cost effective skill to develop. Our overall aim is to have an apprenticeship scheme that develops exceptional skills that our apprentices can build on as a foundation to their career with Norland.