For the last 25 years we have had an Apprenticeship Programme dedicated to getting young people into the technology industry. Today, we trace the history of the programme and present how it has benefited our local communities...
The ITEC Apprenticeship Programme started in the 1990's when we took on engineering students and trained them for two years. They would receive concurrent strands of professional development from their college and from the ITEC Engineers while on day release.
Since then, we've expanded and diversified the programme to take on people in IT or to focus on customer service. Many of our apprentices have stayed on and progressed through the business to take on managerial roles.
The Beginning of the Journey
We're proud that many of ITEC's apprentices have stayed on with the company after they completed their programme. A great example is Jack Walker (pictured below) Post-Sales Solutions Manager.
After completing his three-year apprenticeship as a qualified field engineer, he diversified his skills into IT sales and rose up the ranks. He now manages a team of nine people who all work on the Bristol, Plymouth and Wimborne ITEC Help Desks, providing the support customers need.
Since I started as an apprentice, ITEC has supported my development and given me the opportunity to take on more responsibility...”
Jack Walker, Post-Sales Solutions Manager, ITEC
What Does an ITEC Apprentice Do?
"The Apprenticeship Programme helped me qualify as a field engineer and I was free to go wherever I wanted," explains Jack. "But, the people at ITEC we’re so supportive and welcoming, I had to stay."
ITEC apprentices get a soild foundation in the day-to-day operations of the business. They work across different areas such as warehousing and parts delivery, and under the tutorage of different managers. This is all so they can understand how different departments interact and how every element of the business contributes to its success.
Apprentices are also guaranteed to end the programme with a series of outstanding, industry-recognised qualifications. Depending on their education pathway, ITEC apprentices achieve City & Guilds, NVQ Levels 3 or 4 as well as multiple in-house and vendor training opportunities.
As ITEC's vendor partners are some of the biggest companies in the global market, apprentices get globally recognised certifications. The skills ITEC apprentices develop go far beyond the core requirements of their job and cover all areas of business and ITEC's channels. We make this a fundamental promise of the scheme because we recognise that ITEC and the apprentices don't exist in a silo.
Apprenticeships in the UK
According to this year’s statistics from the House of Commons, in 2017/18 there were 814,800 people participating in an apprenticeship in England. 375,800 apprenticeships started that year – fewer than the previous year, thanks to a change to the funding system. However, 276,200 finished an apprenticeship that year, suggesting that we may see the total number of apprentices go up in the years ahead.
Of those, three or four a year are ITEC apprentices! Whilst the original programme was launched specifically for engineers, and they remain the core of our strategy, we have diversified to give the programme a greater scope. We're looking to extend into finance in the future.
This will mean that apprenticeships cover all areas of the ITEC business – because we recognise just how valuable apprentices can be in driving growth.