If you’re looking for a way to bring in a new hire who is engaged, loyal and eager to learn and progress, then an apprenticeship could be a great way forward.

In 2013, the Government released statistics that suggested, across a two-year period, 73 per cent of apprentices had continued to work in the same organisation. That’s a fantastic retention rate and one that reflects how loyal and engaged apprentices often are.

We spoke to Daniel Walsh who previously completed a business admin apprenticeship with Oakham Ales and who has since gone on to work at the brewery full-time in transport and warehousing. Daniel’s journey highlights how apprentices are eager to progress, applying and developing their skills as they work.

Before the apprenticeship
Prior to starting his apprenticeship with Oakham Ales, Daniel was studying for his A Levels. Daniel said, “I knew that university wasn’t for me. I really liked the idea of earning whilst I was learning; it was an important factor in me choosing to pursue an apprenticeship. At the age of 18 I was ready to start earning, as oppose to doing another three or four years in education.”

The opportunity to progress his career and develop new skills was also a big selling point: “When I saw the Oakham Ales apprenticeship I was immediately interested in the prospects after the initial year. Although nothing was guaranteed, I was determined to work hard and show what I could do to improve my chances of securing a full-time job at the end of it.”

An apprenticeship in Business Admin and ICT
Once Daniel started his apprenticeship, he quickly picked up new skills and was put onto training courses to advance his knowledge further, finding his niche in transport and warehousing.

As a result, Daniel listed the qualifications he achieved: “As a part of my apprenticeship I completed my Level 1 and 2 ICT Functional Skills and Level 2 NVQ in Business and Admin. On top of that, Oakham Ales invested in my interest in transport and warehousing and I completed first aid at work, fire safety and forklift courses. I also now have a WSET Level 1, which is a wine and spirit tasting qualification.

“A real highlight of my apprenticeship was getting to complete the forklift course, it was a great couple of days and it’s given me a skill that I can use for the rest of my working life.”

From apprentice to full-time employee
Today, with his apprenticeship in business admin and ICT complete, Daniel works full-time at the brewery in transport and warehousing. His responsibilities are broad, and they inevitably make him an invaluable member of the Oakham Ales team. He explains that he now looks after: “load planning, stock control, ullage credits, driver’s paperwork, driver debrief, forklifting in the warehouse and picking. I’m also a key holder for the warehouse, helping to keep the premises secure.”

Daniel explains that the work he’s done at Oakham Ales has already given him an idea of where he would like to progress, “I’ve particularly enjoyed the planning side of things at the brewery, so I’ll hopefully be pursuing a career in that at Oakham Ales in the future.”

Daniel’s advice for potential apprentices
As a way to round off our case study, we asked Daniel if he had any advice for those looking at doing an apprenticeship. He said:

“Take your time. Look for an apprenticeship that has good prospects and once you’re there, make sure you put in the hard work and hours – you’ll be far more likely to succeed in getting a full-time job!”