ERIKS has welcomed the first apprentices to its newly designed apprenticeship programme . The new programme demonstrates its commitment to fostering a new generation of engineers and bridging the engineering skills gap.
Thirteen apprentices aged between 17 and 27 will be pursuing Level 3 Engineering qualifications, across different ERIKS locations throughout the United Kingdom. In stark contrast to the persistent concerns around a lack of enthusiasm for engineering careers in the United Kingdom, ERIKS experienced a remarkable interest in its apprenticeship programme with 500 individuals applying for the initiative.
Created from the ground up by Lori Broadhurst, Talent Development Partner at ERIKS, the programme represents an investment of £30,000 per apprentice. The aim, according to Lori is to “Futureproof the company’s workforce by not only nurturing career-specific skills but also fostering a sense of community among apprentices.”
While the apprentices will primarily hone their skills at their respective sites, they will gather every 4-6 weeks for “block release learning” at SMB College in Leicester, ensuring a well-rounded formal engineering education as well as a practical, hands-on one.
The selection process was rigorous, involving CV screenings, telephone interviews, and in-person assessments, culminating in an ‘Insight Day’ where candidates experienced the ERIKS work environment first-hand.
While this, the inaugural year focuses on engineering apprenticeships, ERIKS plans to expand the programme into other areas such as sales, service, supply chain management, finance, and human resources in the future.
Refreshingly, the company’s employees have embraced this initiative with open arms, showcasing their adaptability and enthusiasm for the apprenticeship scheme. “Everybody has really jumped in feet-first and helped tremendously in supporting the process,” Lori Broadhurst remarked.
As the November 2024 application cycle approaches, ERIKS is committed to refining its selection process, incorporating psychometric testing and behavioural analysis to ensure fairness and objectivity.
In the long term, the company aims to broaden its early career development offerings including a graduate programme and other initiatives. Lori concludes, “We are establishing this programme to make it as successful as possible, paving the way for the future.”
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