Five Keys to Setting Up an Apprenticeship Program

 In HR and Management Tips

Apprenticeship programs are a great way to upskill and replenish your workforce and save yourself the time and hassle of finding people with the skills you need. By offering this earn-while-you learn model of apprenticeship, you can hire new workers into your business, and provide the training they need for full-time employment to be successful in your company

Five Tips for Implementation

The first step for any program is your commitment to do it and make it work! Beyond that, you can follow these five best practices for setting up and maintaining an effective apprenticeship program.

  1. Ensure Mentors Have Proper Training

You’d be surprised how many workers are interested in training and mentoring apprentices. Ask your staff for volunteers to help you lead the program. Then, ensure your mentors have the proper training and certifications to teach the skills and knowledge needed to your apprentices. Work with your recruiter to help trainers brush up on skills and make sure they are ready to be leaders of this program.

  1. Interview Potential Apprentices

Just like hiring new employees, you’ll need to interview apprenticeship candidates to ensure a good fit for your company. Understanding their background and work history, and why are they interested in learning a trade and potentially working for your company? Choose apprentices that show passion, fit with your company culture and those who you can envision joining your workforce eventually.

  1. Establish a Reasonable Timeframe and On-the-Job Training skills

Identify the specific tasks, skills, and knowledge that the apprentice will have to learn and then identify who can reasonably teach these skills. Review this with your mentors: how long can be expected for the apprentices to learn required skills? The Department of Labor has structured timelines to help you identify the work processes, tasks, and skills needed for over 3,000 jobs and a recommended reasonable timeline.    Find a quality training provider who can supplement any education that you need outsourced.

  1. Earn while you learn

One of the most important parts of the apprenticeship is to create goals and benchmarks for the apprentice.  As they learn new skills and develop professionally, having an established wage schedule is motivating and encourages loyalty within the program.  An end of program credential is a great way to ensure apprentices will complete the program and then become journeymen who can mentor future apprentices.

  1. Review Progress

This is perhaps the most important part of an apprenticeship., Meet with both mentors and apprentices to review progress on a regular basis. Monitor OJT training progress, as well as performance evaluations, can help support the mentor and apprentice as well as making sure the OJT is purposeful and is supporting the program. This will help you identify any apprentices you’d like to offer full-time positions.

Partner With a Staffing Firm

For help with training, interviewing and even onboarding, work with a staffing firm. Niche or boutique firms that specialize in your industry are especially helpful, as they’re more familiar with your unique needs. Find a staffing firm that understands apprenticeships and can help create a program for your company that supports the development of your workforce.

Check Out Hamilton-Ryker

Through our newest Division, TalentGro®, we can Sponsor and act as Intermediary of a Registered Apprenticeship program. We are responsible for coordinating the program and providing all required paperwork. We will also recruit, assess and provide the apprentices to support your company’s goals.  To learn more and speak with our Director, contact us

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