Wolverhampton City Council's apprenticeship programme has paid dividends for 5 young people after they secured jobs with the authority.

The 16 to 18 year olds, who were part of a cohort of 15 to join the council for a year last September, successfully applied for positions that became available - with four of them being taken on in different roles and departments to their apprenticeship.

Each applicant went through the open recruitment process, going up against a number of other candidates who had applied for the jobs, before being offered the roles on merit.

Hayley Tanser, aged 19, joined the city council's Document Centre providing print and document services as an apprentice before securing her new job as an ICT Co-ordination Administration Officer.

She said: "I am delighted to have got a full-time job with the council and it shows just how important and beneficial my apprenticeship was.

"Although my new job is completely different to what I was doing as an apprentice, I got great experience of the workplace and picked up skills and confidence that will help me in my new role."

Kieran Davenport secured a permanent position as an ICT Support Assistant for Schools, having joined the team as an apprentice.

He said: "I am very grateful for both opportunities and like the independence and the challenges this job throws at me. I decided that I would grab the opportunity with both hands and go for the job which included an interview and practical assessment.

"To my delight I had a phone call and was offered the job. I now feel more confident in my role."

The council is investing almost £900,000 to create 105 apprenticeship opportunities over three-and-a-half years in different departments across the council.

Wolverhampton's Building Schools for the Future programme has also seen 56 apprentice placements being offered in trades including bricklaying, carpentry and joinery - with further opportunities arising as the scheme progresses.

Councillor Phil Page, Wolverhampton City Council's Cabinet Member for Schools, Skills and Learning, said: "To have a third of this cohort of apprentices gain employment with the authority is wonderful news.

"All 5 of them got their jobs on their own merit and what is even more impressive is that most of them are now working in areas different to where they started with us.

"That just underlines how beneficial apprenticeships are. Not only do they give valuable work experience but young people also learn transferrable skills that can help them boost their job prospects.

"I am sure the remaining 10 apprentices will soon be successful in gaining employment or training as a result of what they have learned with us."

Neil Beards, who manages Kieran, added: "The apprenticeship scheme has been a breath of fresh air in terms of employment and giving work opportunities for young people and in return it is benefitting the city and the services we provide.

"Linking real workplace experiences with education has proven to be a great success, allowing the apprentices time to study and put what they've learned into practice. 

"The apprentices also work with team members and shadow experienced staff and learn from their peers which is a great way for them to pick up new skills and offer support to existing staff."

Recruitment for the next intake of apprenticeships at the council, starting in September, is currently underway with 15 vacancies currently being advertised on Type=links;Linkid=1983;Title=wmjobs.co.uk;Target=_blank; with a closing date of 10 June. Further vacancies will be advertised in late June.

  • released: Friday 31 May, 2013