Apprenticeships: Growing IT Talent from the Ground-Up



“IT is a difficult industry to enter!”

“You have to have a computer sciences degree to get into IT!”

“Apprenticeships are a last resort for my child!”

Just some of the comments and misapprehensions that I hear daily working in IT apprenticeships. As a Business Resource Manager my job is to create opportunities for the IT professionals of tomorrow. There is no shortage of companies willing to support such individuals, but there is a lack of young people considering apprenticeships in IT.

Understanding the Value of an Apprentice

What people (parents and teens) are missing is that an apprenticeship in IT is an alternative route to mainstream college and university, a vocational route in to the industry. Companies recruiting apprentices are not looking for grads, nor are they looking for the finished product; what they are seeking is an ambitious and focused young person to take up their offered career path. I certainly was not a classroom type, I could not sit and listen to lectures or lessons without my mind wondering to the window imagining what was out there, what was happening in the big wide world. For this reason, a vocational route was right for me. An engaging, work based qualification, working alongside qualified and experienced professionals.

The common misconception of apprentices is that they are lazy, unmotivated, Kevin and Perry types. This is simply not the case. I’m working with young people who have: coded apps and additional levels/spin offs to online games; designed and built their own hardware; studied ICT at A Level; and even worked with IT companies in the past, be it on work experience or voluntarily. Young people with predetermined skills and a burning desire to get into the industry that we work in.

Typically, an apprentice will add value to a business within a matter of weeks rather than years. Whichever area they specialise in, the vocational route will arm them with not just the qualifications but the priceless required level of experience.

With squeezed budgets and a lack of qualified staff, I don’t see how any company can turn down the opportunity to grow their business organically, from the bottom up; with apprentices.

As a provider, Baltic Training Services works with companies of all sizes. We work with high output and niche SMEs as well as blue chip companies such as Mears, Argos and Northgate IS. We specialise in IT support, Software Development and Social Media and Digital Marketing qualifications. Our process is modern and efficient and our trainers vocationally competent. We are closely linked to Microsoft, Cisco and ITIL, offering vendor qualifications for the aforementioned.

In summary, taking on an apprentice is not a community service or a favour to a friend. It’s a genuine method of breeding talent, growing a business and nurturing employees that will add value almost immediately!

Written by Tudor Murray-Evans

Tudor Murray-Evans is a Business Resource Manager for a fully funded and commercial training provider based in the North East of England; Baltic Training Services. He is qualified to level 3 in IAG via City & Guilds, in recruitment via the Recruitment & Employment Confederation, and in Health & Safety by CIEH. Tudor has thirteen years recruitment experience and has specialised in training for fully funded apprentices for five years.

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