Build The Future: Could an apprentice help boost your business?

With National Apprenticeship Week commencing this year on 8 February, it serves as a timely reminder that academic-based learning is not the only route to success. With the theme for 2021 of Build the Future the week will showcase the impact apprenticeships can have on communities, local businesses and regional economies.

Apprenticeships are a popular and cost-effective training solution to help businesses develop skills that they need, while also having been proven to increase productivity by an average of over £200 per week. They provide a real job with substantive, sustained, high-quality training in order to become occupationally competent in the chosen industry, with a broad range of industries on offer.

There are many out there who believe that an apprenticeship is solely for those who have finished school and don’t have the desire to head to university, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Many adult employees are also training through the apprenticeship programme. In fact, over 150,000 apprentices are currently aged 25 years or older and many are existing employees looking to expand their skills

One Cornish company who has looked to take on an apprentice in 2021 is Redruth’s JR Flat Roofing. With a staff of 18 employees, JR Flat Roofing was looking to add some extra muscle to their office staff, however the idea of an apprentice to do just that was something not originally considered.  

New skills and the desire to make regular training a part of the JR Flat Roofing ethos led the team to the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Skills Hub for their independent, impartial and expert skills support. This push for new skills has since prompted JR Flat Roofing to take on an apprentice, something that Marion Rogers hopes will benefit their business for many years to come.

“It’s totally new, many years ago we had apprentices who went out to be a roofer, but once again I’d never considered someone being an admin apprentice for our office. Even though I did it myself 30 years ago,” said Marion.

“If someone wants to make a career of it, it’s a good investment for us as a business as they will become invested in us, and hopefully they think about staying on,” she added.

Supported by funding from the European Social Fund, the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Skills Hub can help you navigate the ins and outs of apprenticeships, taking the hard work out of finding the right solution to see your business thrive.

Getting beneath the skin of your business to uncover the skills you need, the Skills Hub will spot the things that you might not see for yourself. Who knows, maybe the thing that is missing is an apprentice.

Skills Hub Project Manager, Bethany Allen, said that for businesses looking to take on an apprentice it certainly proves to be a worthwhile investment.

“Recruiting and training an apprentice allows you to promote the specific skills required by your business, therefore you’re not only investing in the future of your people, you’re investing in your business as a whole,” she said.

Could an apprentice help you fill a skills gap, while also helping someone find new skills for themselves?

Call the Skills Hub on 01209 708 660 to find out more about how they can help make your business better, or visit