UKCloud’s apprenticeship programme launched in 2017 as part of our Early Careers initiative to support and build the skills we need for the future generation.
According to The Tech Partnership, 89% of employers reported an apprentice helped improve their product or service, with the number of digital apprentices increased by 21% over the past year.
In 2016, the government published Digital Skills for the UK Economy, stating that there is a clear link between market competitiveness and the uptake and application of digital technology in the workplace.
As a SME, and having had a huge success in our undergraduate placements schemes, we are proud to have started our apprenticeship journey with three IT support apprentices in September 2017 working within our customer service and internal IT support departments. With a current team of 196, 10% are within our Early Careers programme.
All our apprentices have come on leaps and bounds and all undertake a ‘real paid job’ and play a valuable part in UKCloud’s community.
This week was important to us because we wanted to talk about how and why a SME can provide valuable apprenticeships, how this bridges the Digital skills deficit and provides a greater understanding that a ‘digital’ career is available to everyone.
What tips would you give to others considering an apprenticeship?
If you want your foot in the door in a specific line of work, an apprenticeship is a great choice as you can join a large company and progress within it, whilst gaining your qualifications. This can give you a chance of staying on after the apprenticeship as well as great insight into the commercial world. (Han, IT Support Apprentice)
Research whatever company you are going to work for and try to understand what they do and how they work and be open and honest when it comes to the interviews. You want to be honest, so your employer knows how much work and responsibility to give you, otherwise you can end up with a lot more than you can handle. (Zach, IT Support Apprentice)
The biggest tip I would give someone considering an apprenticeship is to make sure the company they are picking is the best for you. (Ben, IT Support Apprentice)
What’s it like to work with the UKCloud team?
It’s a great place to work as you are given freedom to control your day and how you work. You can always join in on training and projects. This is a great way to work with other teams more often as everyone is friendly and willing to help. (Han, IT Support Apprentice)
Working with the UKCloud team is fantastic, everyone was helpful and friendly from day one and treated you as a new member of the team. Everybody is understanding that we’re here to learn and become a useful, knowledgeable part of the team and are always able to sit down and explain a concept or problem that we may be having an issue with. This friendly, helpful attitude of all the employees makes the apprenticeship a lot easier and stress free. (Zach, IT Support Apprentice)
The UKCloud team is a close community where everyone is approachable and easy talk to. Everyone in the team has helped me greatly and they really want you to do well. (Ben, IT Support Apprentice)