Lisa HumphreysLisa Humphreys, Student Engagement Manager at St Helens College, explains the College’s innovative approach to apprenticeship recruitment. It saves money and time for employers and ensures prospective apprentices are apprenticeship ready.

With National Apprenticeship Week 2018 in full swing and events, initiatives, awareness raising and success stories taking place across the country, it is easy to forget about the massive amount of work that takes place behind the scenes between employers and training providers to ensure the right person is on the right apprenticeship.

In my role at St Helens College, I am responsible for careers and initial advice and guidance activities and all student engagement and recruitment activities for apprentices.

When I speak to employers, in particular SMEs, they often tell me how costly and time consuming recruitment can be. Since I joined St Helens College for the second time almost two years ago now, my team and I have aimed to remove this burden by offering a totally free recruitment service for employers. This service aims to take the hassle out of recruitment for your business and help to find the best apprenticeship talent for your role.

Recruiting an apprentice might seem complicated at first but as one of the largest apprenticeship providers in the Liverpool City Region we have worked with hundreds of employers, to deliver high quality Apprenticeships across a range of sectors including: Construction, Engineering, Motor Vehicle, Computing and Professional, Leisure and Retail, Life Sciences and Health, Public Sector and Logistics, Transport and Warehousing.

At St Helens College, we have broken down the recruitment process into four stages. To help give you an understanding of the background work that goes into finding you that perfect candidate for your apprenticeship vacancy.

Stage 1

Firstly, if you’ve identified that your business could benefit from an extra pair of hands or that your current employees are progressing within the business or even retiring, taking on an apprentice can be the best option to help fill a potential skills gap. Apprentices are eager to learn and will pick up skills from your existing team to fill their shoes once they’ve moved on.

Our experienced Business Development Executives can help you get the ball rolling by answering any burning questions in relation to taking on an apprentice. They will help you identify the right apprenticeship standard/framework for the job role you are looking to fill. Costs can also be a concern, but our experienced team will discuss the costs of the apprenticeship, if any, and talk you through any grants or funding you may be eligible to receive.

Stage 2

Your apprenticeship vacancy is then passed on to the Apprenticeship Recruitment Team who I am responsible for. We can handle all aspects of the recruitment for the role including advertising the role via The National Apprenticeship Service website and across social media platforms. We also email your vacancy to our pre-screened candidates within our applicant pool who may have an interest in the position.

Stage 3

Over a 3-4 week period, the recruitment team will screen and interview potential candidates based on your criteria and shortlist the best candidates for you to interview. Interviews are arranged on your behalf at a time that suits you. All that’s left for you to do is conduct the interviews and select the best candidate for the position. The college can also help to arrange interviews and notify candidates of times and schedules.

Stage 4

Once you have appointed your new employee, we will assign a college assessor to the apprentice to help get them settled. The initial assessor visit requires you to be present to complete the apprenticeship sign up and talk through the qualification, the assessor will then visit the apprentice on a monthly basis in the workplace to check their progress.

Our recruitment process is fully flexible and can be changed and adapted to meet your needs allowing us to identify a process that works for you.
If you’re interested in finding out more about our recruitment process, you may want to take a read of our case study on Blue Square Utilities. The independent smart meter installation business turned to St Helens College to provide support and guidance in relation to training and recruitment of 100 new Smart Meter Apprentices.

Recruit an apprentice with St Helens College

If you’re looking to grow your business, then recruiting an apprentice could be the perfect solution, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our Business Development Team on 0800 99 66 99 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..