Finalist for the 2017 WISE Apprenticeship Programme Award
The apprentice scheme here in the Manchester location of DF PD began in 2010 with 4 apprentices on a Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship in Engineering Manufacture. We now have a rolling cohort occupancy of 16-17 apprentices. As well as satisfying the requirements of this standard, apprentices were given a rotational placement programme around the different aspect of our business in order to find where their individual talents were best suited which resulted in a final year placement leading to a junior job position in that role for further development.
Since taking over the scheme in 2013 I have looked at raising the profile of our apprentices within the business and the brand of our apprenticeship so that the quality and opportunities continue to attract high calibre applications.
Steps we have taken to improve quality include: –
- IET accreditation of the apprentice scheme
- Mandated IET membership for all apprentices
- Mentoring apprentices through to professional registration as EngTech
- Mandated STEM ambassador membership for all apprentices
- Apprentices are targeted to participate in STEM, CSR and recruitment activities
- Due to the calibre of apprentices we were getting we took the decision to adopt a Higher Apprenticeship program
- Development of an academic pathway through to degree attainment
- Created a new top-up engineering degree with the University of Salford (BEng (Hons) in Control & Automation that we co deliver 40 credits of with our PLC training programme)
- We now offer a degree apprenticeship due to these developments
- We constantly look for ways in which we can attract greater diversity in our programme
- The DF PD scheme in Manchester has raised its visibility with apprentices featuring regularly in case studies on the IET website, involvement in the IET’s work experience initiative, STEMapp toolkit by WISE and individuals have won regional and national apprentice of the year awards