So you’ve just hired a new Apprentice – fantastic news! Apprentices are great for helping businesses grow as well as engaging young people and nurturing the skilled workforce needed for the future. But how best to make your new Apprentice feel welcome and set them up for success? We’ve put together 3 handy tips to guide you through the process and help you go the extra mile.
1. Remember this is probably their first job
Whilst Apprentices can be any age, the vast majority are 24 or under. Therefore, the most important thing to consider from the moment your new Apprentice walks through the door is that this could be their first experience of any work environment. Of course it is important to make all new recruits feel part of the team, but for someone who has come directly from the community feel of a school or college, a smaller, single focussed work environment can be very daunting so bear this in mind, especially during their first few weeks.
Secondly, it may have been a while since they applied for the Apprenticeship, so spending some time going through a list of their job responsibilities and discussing if they feel comfortable with the required tasks might prove useful to reiterate what is and isn’t expected of them. It’s important to let your new Apprentice know that it’s okay if they make mistakes as they are there to learn and develop their skills. Explaining this, along with any other workplace etiquette will help them adjust to their new position and understand what is and isn’t expected of them.
As with any new recruit, simple gestures such as making your new Apprentice a cup of tea and/or having a team lunch on their first day will help build positive relationships in the workplace between you, the new Apprentice and the rest of the team. Make sure to introduce your new recruit to other staff members and their job roles during their first day as they may feel too shy to introduce themselves.
2. If you can, assign them a buddy or mentor
Having a designated mentor to guide your new Apprentice through the first few weeks and months of their qualification can bring out the best in your new employee. New Apprentices will be curious and ask a lot of questions, so having someone they can feel comfortable querying will go a long way towards helping them settle in, especially if this is their first job. It builds confidence as well as credible skills and can ultimately lead to innovative thinking down the road. Apprentices can yield great benefits to an organisation, but they need an environment where they can flourish; a big part of this is having a mentor who is prepared to provide the necessary guidance and support, especially at the beginning of their Apprenticeship.
3. Recognise their successes
Taking time out to communicate is essential for your Apprentice’s success. Knowing what’s working and what’s not can make a huge difference for Apprenticeship progression. As mentioned previously, for some Apprentices, this may well be their first job so it’s important to schedule in regular meetings to feed back on their performance and set objectives.
Take a moment to say well done when your Apprentice has performed well or mastered a new skill, no matter how small. Appreciation and praise from their manager will make your Apprentice feel valued and providing regular positive feedback will ensure your new recruit feels like they are positively progressing in their Apprenticeship.
Do you need help hiring an Apprentice? You’re in the right place. We’re experienced in recruiting Apprentices and can help you find the right person. This service is fully funded and available to recruit Apprentices who are under the age of 25. Find out more here.