Although the benefits of apprenticeships are widely known, there are also several misconceptions which may put people off. Here’s the truth behind some of the common myths:
- ‘You’re better off going to university’
While there is no denying that completing a degree course at university is the right path for some, an apprenticeship can also provide the perfect alternative learning and development opportunity for many. It’s a chance to earn as you learn, without accruing the student debt, and the added bonus is you don’t need any prior qualifications to be accepted onto an apprenticeship course.
- ‘Apprenticeships don’t lead to employment’
Government statistics suggest otherwise. In fact, after completing an apprenticeship, approximately 90 per cent of people stay in employment, with 71 per cent staying with the same employer. Furthermore, a quarter of former apprentices received a promotion within 12 months, with three quarters taking on more responsibility within their role.
- ‘Apprentices work for free’
Not the case – the current minimum wage rate for an apprentice aged 16 to 18 is £3.30 per hour, and more depending on the national minimum wage for the age category you fall into, with higher potential earning as you progress. As an apprentice, you’re also entitled to 20 days holiday a year as well as the usual bank holidays.
- ‘There aren’t many courses to choose from’
Apprenticeship courses are available in around 1,500 roles across more than 170 industries, from education, media, engineering and healthcare, to leisure, retail, construction and law, a diverse range of options to choose from.
- ‘Existing employees can’t undertake an apprenticeship’
This is one myth which we can categorically bust, because you can complete an apprenticeship even if you’re already in work. It’s the perfect way to learn new skills, which can also lead to vast benefits for the employer, including a more skilled workforce and opportunity for business growth.