Isabella Collishaw @ Potensis – Future LDN Apprentice of the Month

Isabella Collishaw @ Potensis – Future LDN Apprentice of the Month

The winner of Tech City Stars Apprentice of the Month is Isabella Collishaw @ Potensis

LDN Group highlights a clear message of what makes an AWESOME Apprentice; they must show energy, enthusiasm, willingness to learn, ability to take feedback and propensity to take action (EEWAP). Isabella’s nomination is below:

Energy: Izzy comes to work with energy to spare for the rest of her team. Naturally she is very inquisitive and one of the reasons we selected her after her trial day with us that she asked the most questions compared to her peers. She demonstrates her energy by actively seeking work and assignments when is nearing the end or finished her previous task. Her daily repetitive tasks are so well done that we only need to catch up about them once a month in our reviews and so far we haven’t had any/many issues with these.

Enthusiasm: Izzy loves working here and she is really keen and enthusiastic to take on work and develop her own ability and understanding. A few months ago we changed her responsibilities and even moved her to a new desk as most of her work was supporting a different team. She is now fully integrated into that team and has become a vital member, freeing up others time to focus on billing.

Willingness To Learn: Izzy’s willingness to learn is evident by the sheer number of questions she asks. She wants to know how things work and why certain things happen the way they happen. Most of her questions are sensible and well thought out, she’s not asking “just because”, but there is a thought process behind the question. She also loves to learn new things, as her line manager and also the company training manager, I’ve spent a lot of time working with her and it is evident that she not only willing to learn new things but actually thrives from it. I get the feeling that she would get stagnant if there wasn’t new tasks or concepts to learn in her work. 

Ability To Take Feedback: I have no problem explaining things to Izzy. Generally I ask her once to do something or explain to her how something works and she gets it. Same with feedback. She adapts her behaviours in line with what has been discussed. So not only is she taking the feedback but she is also putting it into action on a daily basis.

Propensity To Take Action: As mentioned above Izzy seeks out new work when required but this now “normal” for her and we would expect anyone with more than 3 months experience to do this. What I would like to highlight is that Izzy is now foreseeing issues within the realm of her work. She noticed that there were some changes in the timesheets she was processing as we hadn’t received the timesheets from a number of the regular workers. For us this would mean lost or delayed business. Izzy called the workers and chased them for their time sheets. The result of this was no delay in business and no lost/missing workers’ pay, which always meant that the team she supports didn’t have to do it themselves. Another example is how on top of her coursework she is. I asked Izzy to set up a schedule and, where she can, stick to that schedule so that she stays on top of her work. She is very much ahead and continues to push and as a result she is likely to finish her coursework ahead of schedule, which means that she can focus on work for final few months of her apprenticeship and really add value to the business as a whole.

Congratulations, Izzy!

Tommy Malcheryczk @ Xantura – Tech LDN Apprentice of the Month

Tommy Malcheryczk @ Xantura – Tech LDN Apprentice of the Month

The winner of Tech LDN Apprentice of the Month is Tommy Malcheryczk @ Xantura

LDN Apprenticeships highlights a clear message of what makes an AWESOME Apprentice; they must show energy, enthusiasm, willingness to learn, ability to take feedback and propensity to take action (EEWAP). Tommy’s nomination is below:

Energy: Since joining the team Tommy has shown a desire and energy in all aspects of his work, including working as part of a team, dealing with colleagues, managers and customers alike. In short Tommy is determined to succeed.

Enthusiasm:  Tommy consistently demonstrates his enthusiasm in all aspects of the role and this includes some of the more menial (but equally important) tasks that he has been allocated. 

Willingness To Learn: Tommy listens well when being trained and has demonstrated a willingness and desire to learn new areas of work, having been trained Tommy is not afraid to ask for clarification in order to gain a full and comprehensive understanding of the allocated task.

Ability To Take Feedback; As above, Tommy listens hard and is comfortable in asking for assistance and taking advice from both colleagues and managers alike. Tommy happily takes on board suggested improvements and implements change accordingly.

Propensity To Take Action: Tommy is a self-starter and is equally comfortable working on individual tasks, identify issues and opportunities for process improvement as working coherently as part of a team. Tommy has suggested  a number of process improvements both technical and manual, some of which have since been successfully implemented.

Congratulations, Tommy!

Five Tips On How To Harness Gen-Z Talent To Supercharge Your Marketing Efforts.

Five Tips On How To Harness Gen-Z Talent To Supercharge Your Marketing Efforts.

Hire a digital marketing apprentice, they say!  

Young people today are digital natives, they’ve grown up with social media, they’re …. digital natives! 

Seldom has a statement been more misleading than this one. The truth is that it’s very unlikely that a young person will be able to walk into your business and take over the management of your digital marketing single handed.  

So why is digital marketing one of the most popular apprenticeships around for employers and young people? And how can you effectively harness the talent of a young person to supercharge your marketing efforts? 

First, you need to stop being led by the myth. The average aspiring digital marketer is not going to have the vast knowledge required to effectively build and execute your digital campaigns on their own. They will, at the very least, need the support and guidance of an experienced and knowledgeable manager. Along with a working environment where they can learn all the skills that good digital marketers need to have. 

Second, you should look for young people who have experience outside of social media platforms, and focus your attention on those who can demonstrate how they have harnessed the power of social media to create something.  This could be anything from building a following on a YouTube channel to making, marketing and selling products online.  

Here at LDN Apprenticeships, we meet young people on a daily basis who have done just this. It’s not on their CV and in some cases they are even shy or embarrassed to share their achievements. 

That said, these are the young people who have applied their creativity to a real world situation and who have made something as a result. Be it a product, a following or a movement – these young people have the skills you need in your business.  

If you make the decision to hire one of these brilliant, creative young people there are some important things to consider in the process. Here are our 5 top tips: 

 

1. Make sure you identify an awesome manager 

Your Apprentice Digital Marketer will spend at least 80% of their time at work. You want to be sure that while they’re there, they’re learning new things, taking action and improving. The best way to make this work is to identify a manager who will give the apprentice the support and guidance they need. Combined with the support of your apprenticeship provider, you’ll be astonished at how much your apprentice learns in a very short space of time. 

 

2. Define the role to fill skills gaps in your existing team 

Make sure you look at your current marketing skill set. Then try to recruit an apprentice who fills some of the gaps. If you’re weak on video production, actively seek a young person who’s a talented video editor. Or if you think you could do with a boost to your copywriting capacity, look for a young person who gets your tone and writes well. Approaching it in this way, means you’re actively avoiding the pitfalls of the mythical digital native. 

 

3. Look for a self-starter 

When you meet candidates for the opportunity, talk to them about what they have done with their passion for all things digital. Have they studied something outside of school or college (there are a wealth of free and very well publicised online courses)? Have they started a business of their own? Or have they helped a friend with their digital savvy-ness. Taking action is the first step – the thing to work out is if you can harness that initiative. 

4. Put rules and structure in place to measure and manage 

When you’ve hired your apprentice, make sure you’ve got a structure in place. Making it easy to measure and manage performance. Most people (young ones included) respond incredibly positively. Knowing the why, the what, the how and the when of their job. Make this incredibly clear from the outset.

5. Give direct feedback and reward success 

If you are successful in doing 1, 2, 3 and 4, then you’ll find yourself a talented young person who is eager to learn and take action. No matter how talented they are, they will still make mistakes. It is critical that when they do, you give them direct feedback. The ability to take feedback is critical to learning and development. Finally, just as you give direct feedback, you should also reward success. This doesn’t mean throwing bonuses around, it just means giving praise when praise is due. 

 

Digital marketing will always be evolving on a day to day basis.

Recruiting young apprentices are a great way to discover new and exciting marketing opportunities for your business. Keeping one of your most important outputs to the world fresh and up-to-date.

To learn more about hiring a digital marketing apprentice into your team, check out our Tech LDN digital marketing program HERE.

Truth or Convenient Narrative: There Is No Reason for the Tech Skills Shortage

Truth or Convenient Narrative: There Is No Reason for the Tech Skills Shortage

Why Apprentices Are ready To Fill The Tech Void

 

With the relentless rise of digital tech in the modern-day workplace, you’d be forgiven for thinking that employers were universally on top of their strategy for attracting, retaining and developing digital talent. 

 

If recent reports are to go by though, this is far from the truth. And it’s only getting worse! 

 

According to a skills shortage report published by the Edge Foundation, there are 600,000 tech jobs that companies just can’t fill. These vacancies are costing the UK economy £63 BILLION a year. 

 

What struck me most about this figure is the sheer scale of it! 600,000 vacancies don’t just appear overnight. These vacancies have been appearing (and going unfilled) in the UK’s technology ecosystem for years.

 

So why is there STILL a shortage Within The Tech Industry?  

 

There are two reasons.

 

Firstly, UK companies are obsessed with their productivity today. Don’t get me wrong, of course this is vital to business, but there seems to be a lack of focus on the medium term in many large or growing businesses. With Brexit on the horizon, it’s more important than ever for UK Plc to start hedging by investing in talent that will become the future workforce.

 

Secondly, there is an issue with the process. There is currently no scalable, trusted process which is widely adopted by companies to fast track young talent into positions where they are productive. University takes at least three years, and very few graduates are instantly productive. Schools certainly don’t produce huge numbers of highly productive, work-ready young people.  

 

Here at The London Group, we believe that one of the answers lies somewhere in the middle. What schools do produce is thousands of young people whose only limitation is that they do not have the network or the training they need to become productive workers, quickly.

 

These young people have bucket loads of energy and enthusiasm, but they fall at the first hurdle because too many employers are obsessed with an instant return.  

 

What Tech Skills Do Our Applicants Already Have?

 

Every day, The London group is inundated with young people looking to start a career within the tech industry.

 

Many of our apprentices are self-taught, learning skills which fall way outside of the school curriculum. This includes courses as varied Google Digital Garage, Microsoft’s Virtual Academy, Technet Virtual Labs, Udemy, Codecademy, Pluralsight, Salesforce Trailheads and even using good ol’ YouTube to investigate, learn and apply new skills. 

 

Furthermore, if you dig a little deeper, many of these same young people are running their own social channels. They’re building software and IT networks to solve problems in their daily lives, or producing incredible content to tell the story of something they’re passionate about.

 

How many of them would tell you about this on their CV… none, or at least very few. Worse still, how many of their CVs would even make it to the screen of your laptop? Fewer still. And how many would you give a job to? Well… you get the point. 

 

Why Apprenticeship Providers Can Bridge The Gap In Tech Shortages.

 

Apprenticeship providers are seeing a completely different side of the skills shortage spectrum. Not only are we able to tap into a talent pool of eager and enthusiastic young people (there are over a million of these in London alone), we’re also able to harness the huge potential of diverse groups, such as women and other minorities, who are looking to get into the tech industry.

 

Proof: Only 17% of UK IT specialists are female. Here at The London Group, we have a 50/50 gender split of apprentices. Almost TRIPLE that of industry standard. 

 

So, apprenticeship providers are uniquely positioned to support employers in their efforts to bridge the skills gap. We have applicants applying for tech apprenticeships DAILY from a variety of different backgrounds. Whilst we have experienced industry professionals who can help these young people to become truly productive workers, and quickly. And we have the support of a government backed apprenticeship system which funds everything we do!  

 

What we lack are the employers who are willing to look ahead to the not-too-distant future. Who take action, investing time and effort today to develop the talent and skills they require for tomorrow. If this does not happen, those 600,000 vacancies will only grow in number and in a year’s time we’ll be having the same conversation.  

 

In order to fill those 600,000 vacancies, employers must understand the world of work is changing. Digital is the new core skill for the modern economy. It is now critical that companies begin to address bridge the gap between talented young people those 600,000 vacancies begin to get filled. 

 

The talent is out there and apprenticeship providers are ready to help fill those roles within the tech industry.   

Beat The Rush! Why Now Is The Best Time To Hire Your Apprentice.

Beat The Rush! Why Now Is The Best Time To Hire Your Apprentice.

When is the right time to hire an apprentice? There’s never a bad time to hire an apprentice, as long as you feel you’re ready to introduce a new starter into your business. 

 

Come September, there will be a spike in the number of companies looking for an apprentice as businesses return to normal after the summer break.

 

At the same time, school leavers will have discovered their GCSE grades. Looking to go into further education or start the first steps of their career. 

 

This means there will be a HUGE rush to hire apprentices in the month of September. Making the process of recruiting the right person for your company more stressful than it should be. 

 

We all know that July and August are incredibly popular months for team members to take their holidays.  

 

So September may seem like the ideal time to introduce an apprentice into your team. But be aware that every other business will have the same idea! 

 

Get One Step Ahead.

 

Getting ahead of the curve and making sure you’re able to give yourself time to get a new hire in place before other businesses is key. 

 

Whilst all other companies delay their hiring process and begin to rush in September, you’ll have a new apprentice in place with their feet already under the desk at your firm. 

 

Competition in September is fierce and its not only competition from other business that you should consider. September is an incredibly busy period for school leavers.

 

Schools and colleges are starting up again and if a young person has not secured an apprenticeship, they may choose to go back into education. Similarly, clearing for universities begins in late August this year, creating more competition for the best young talent.  

 

School leavers will be receiving their GCSE results on the 23rd of August this year, but many will have been thinking about becoming an apprentice and taking their next step for quite some time.  

 

Those who are deciding between apprenticeships or university will either apply for an apprenticeship between June and August. If they don’t secure one, many will go on to university in September. 

 

Many school leavers start looking for their next opportunity throughout their last year in school or college. Young people like this usually make for an excellent apprentices.  

 

Why The Attitude Of An Apprentice Is So Important.

 

If they’ve been looking for some time, it normally means the young person is ready to take the next step. As well as this, they more than likely know what career path they want to take. It also demonstrates that they are proactive, and have the positive, can-do attitude that so many employers desire. 

 

Here at The London Group, our application process is specifically catered towards the attitude of an apprentice. Using the #EEWAP framework and a CV free process. 

 

An apprentice’s attitude goes a long way to making an excellent and engaged member of your team. Skills are great and can be taught, but if you don’t have a positive and enthusiastic attitude, those skills may be wasted. 

 

This is why school leavers present such an exciting opportunity for companies seeking to hire them as apprentices. Their attitude enables them to start a career they love and the training and support they’ll receive from you and their apprenticeship provider will help them to build on the skills they’ve already learnt. 

 

August is a great time to recruit an apprentice. Just think – if you take action now, whilst everyone else is hiring in September, your new apprentice will already be embedded into your business and working within your team.