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What Are the Benefits of Apprenticeships for Learners?

The former television ‘dragon’ Theo Paphitis is a fan of apprenticeships: “I was useless in the classroom; I would spend my time looking out of the window after the first 10 minutes. But when you do an apprenticeship, you don’t have to wait for the teacher to tell you when it’s time to start, because you are on the shop floor learning for real.”

The retail magnate didn’t got to university but was still keen to learn. The government’s most recent report on apprenticeships, published exactly two years ago, reflects Paphitis’ belief and evidences the impact this route to a career can have.

This gargantuan tome, running to 191 pages, entitled: ‘Apprenticeships Evaluation 2021: Learners & Employers’, is intended to help monitor key progress indicators and shape future development of the apprenticeship programme.

For learners it covers individuals’ motivations for undertaking their apprenticeship, their experience of the training they received; their satisfaction with the apprenticeship both overall and in relation to specific elements; and the impact it has had on their career.


In this necessarily brief summary, it showed that the vast majority (84%) of apprentices were satisfied overall with their apprenticeship. Satisfaction was particularly high for certain elements of apprenticeships – ‘enabling better job performance’, and the ‘quality of learning and the feedback received on progress’ (85% each).

Virtually all (99%) apprenticeship completers gained skills during their apprenticeship, related to their current or desired area of work (94%); skills that can be used across a range of jobs (92%); communication skills (88%); and collaboration (85%). What’s more, a majority had improved their digital (69%), English (61%) and maths (53%) skills.

Almost all (95%) of apprentices reported at least one positive impact on their job or career prospects since starting or completing their apprenticeship. Four in ten (39%) completers had been promoted and two-thirds (65%) had received a pay rise since completing their apprenticeship. The majority of apprentices (91%) felt that their apprenticeship had prepared them well for what they wanted to do next, and almost half (46%) felt it had prepared them very well.

Skills for life

So important are the aforementioned skills that this year’s recent National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) had a theme of ‘Skills for Life’. That’s because apprenticeships are a cornerstone of the government’s plans to provide people with an excellent route into some of the best careers and contributing to a high-skill, high-productivity economy.

The very fact that NAW 2024 was the 17 th such annual event underlines the importance of apprenticeships in the UK, and that importance is growing. Since 2010, over 5.7 million people have started their apprenticeship journey and the government is increasing investment in apprenticeships to £2.7 billion by 2024-25, ensuring businesses have a pipeline of talent to grow the economy.

Apprenticeships build skills supply now and for the future, and form an important part of many organisations’ recruitment, skills and business strategies. Apprenticeships offer the unique ability to train for a specialist role with expert ‘got the t-shirt’ educators combining practical work based training supported by classroom study. Being in the workplace means you will be given proper work to do and as you progress, your capabilities will be tested with more responsibility. Apprentices are workers, treated as employees, yet are students too.

Training on the job means that you will enjoy a real taste of the career you are pursuing while at the same time putting yourself in a brilliant position to land that job when the apprenticeship ends.

Apprenticeships are not only available to school leavers, but also to those looking to improve their skills and career choices and those looking to change direction. Existing staff can also be trained through an apprenticeship.


Of the 20 dragons, only nine went to university, with one dropping out after his first lecture and another not completing her degree. Peter Jones, the only original dragon in the den is an advocate of apprenticeships: “Throughout my career, some of my best hires have been people who have bypassed the traditional route of university and learned their skills through apprenticeship schemes or alternative education courses.”

Jones, like Paphitis, is convinced in the value of education and just what apprenticeships can provide. We provide apprenticeship training at Asset Training in a range of sectors, so talk to us. For more information visit: Contact Us – Asset Training

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