Apprenticeship roles advertised at County Council

  |  Published: Jun 7th 2016
Cameron Barrett and John Chilver
Cameron Barrett and John Chilver

People aged from 16 to 60 can be an apprentice at the County Council if they are trying to step on the career ladder or are planning a career switch.

The Council is currently advertising apprenticeship opportunities to take the number of its apprentices this summer to around 30

Caroline High, Corporate Training Advisor at the Council, explained: “People tend to think of apprenticeships in terms of young people coming in at entry level, but apprenticeships are also open to unqualified staff looking for career progression.  

“It’s in our interests for Buckinghamshire County Council to offer more apprenticeships, as a way of recovering some of the money we are required to pay into  the Government’s new national levy. For every apprentice we hire, we can apply to reclaim some of this money to fund their training.”

The Council is keen to grow its own staff as well as to offer more apprenticeships this year compared to last year, and is working towards a target of 63 people working towards an apprenticeship qualification, in combination with Buckinghamshire Adult Learning.

Officers also hope to use funding from the Government levy to pay for training schemes for existing staff, who may want to retrain, and this will help solve some specific skills shortages across the organisation.

John Chilver, Cabinet Member for Resources at the Council, said: “An apprenticeship with the County Council  can open lots of different routes into some really interesting careers. You could, for example, start in business admin and end as an accountant, or as a Countryside Rights of Way Officer, or  an E-Commerce specialist. We are committed to developing our staff and want to see people continuing to gain skills while at work and have better progression.”

Cameron Barrett, aged 22, is now a full-time member of staff at the Council after successfully completing a one-year apprenticeship.

He said:  “After leaving school at 16, I was unsure of what direction I wanted to take my life. What I knew was that I wanted to work rather than go to college or school, but was unsure of where. I worked in several different retail jobs but was still unsure of what path to take. The jobs were missing the sense of achievement, structure and career path that I needed."

But things changed when he landed a role as an apprentice Customer Service Advisor at the County Council.

“The role gave me a chance of gaining an NVQ qualification, on-the-job experience and the chance to meet a great bunch of colleagues, who I can call my friends. It also importantly gave me great opportunities to steer my career in the direction I wanted it to go,” he said.

Cameron is now working within the commercial team on a project to improve the E-Commerce system. He previously also worked for the Customer Insight Team where he helped install web chat for the Council’s website.

He added: “I’m grateful for all the opportunities I have been given within this organisation, I’ve achieved things I dreamed I would do whilst at school. For anyone who’s thinking about applying I would strongly recommend it. The apprenticeship scheme is a great way to grow as a person whilst developing career based skills.”

For those who want to apply for a County Council apprenticeship, go to: http://jobs.buckscc.gov.uk/job-areas/apprenticeships/

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