Sam Blagbrough

Categories:Apprenticeships Subjects:Apprenticeships Published:
Sam Blagbrough Grant Hutchinson Marshalls

Company: Marshalls Mono Ltd

Job: -

Halifax company Marshalls Mono Ltd has taken on its first Apprentices through Kirklees College and is working with the college to find ways to combat a skills gap within the industry. Over the last few years Kirklees College has been working differently with employers to ensure programmes meet their business...

Halifax company Marshalls Mono Ltd has taken on its first Apprentices through Kirklees College and is working with the college to find ways to combat a skills gap within the industry.

Over the last few years Kirklees College has been working differently with employers to ensure programmes meet their business needs, either as part of their long term plans to replace an ageing workforce coming up to retirement age, or developing new facilities and programmes to meet specific skills gaps.

Marshalls Engineering Manager Grant Hutchinson said they had found Apprenticeships were working really well for the company and the apprentices.

“There is definitely a huge skills gap because we have trouble recruiting staff with the skills we need,” said Grant.

“I’m a huge advocate of Apprenticeships because if you can’t get the skills you need, you can grow your own.

“For young people it’s a great way to build a career especially if university isn’t for you.

“They are genuinely learning skills, being challenged and doing something worthwhile academically.”

Apprenticeships give employers a chance for their staff to improve skills and recruit new enthusiastic workers

Sam Blagbrough, 19, from Halifax, is an engineering apprentice with Kirklees College based at the Engineering Centre in Huddersfield, and works for Marshalls in Southowram.

“I’ve been at Marshalls for over two years and have learned more than I could have imagined,” said Sam.

“I enjoy the balance between the hands-on role and the academic side. What I’m doing at college, I’ve found a lot of it applies to what I am doing at work.

“I’m learning a set of skills, getting qualified and gaining work experience and I don’t have the debt I would have had from university but I could still go on to degree level.

“When I left college this is exactly what I would have set as my goal to have achieved within two years.”

Now Marshalls is working with Kirklees College to see how it can benefit from the Government’s Apprenticeship Levy to upskill existing staff.

“Employers are looking for multi-skilled personnel. It is definitely the way forward and the apprentices coming through now are multi-skilled,” said Grant.

“Here we have an ageing workforce, most of us are in our 50s and either trained in mechanical or electrical engineering.

“We’re working with the college to put together a short course giving an introduction to multi-skills, so giving electrical training for non-electrical personnel.

“I didn’t realise you could go to college, sit down and put your own course together and work with them to get what you need.

“It’s going really great and has been very positive so far and we’re definitely going to get value out of it, even more value if we can pay for extended training out of the levy and that is what we are looking to do.”

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