IT Support / Sys Admin: A Perfect Role For An Apprentice

IT Support / Sys Admin: A Perfect Role For An Apprentice

James O'Donnell

Apprenticeships are all about giving young people the opportunity to work in a 0900 to 1700 role whilst working toward a real qualification that will set them up for years to come. It’s always an interesting conversation that I have with clients about the kind of roles that young tech-savvy apprentices are best suited to.


One of the most obvious roles that we find for young people about to start our Tech LDN Apprenticeship program is a Sys Admin or 1st Line Support type role. Essentially in this kind of role you are that first point of contact for IT and the rest of the business.

Who better to have at that interface, but a young, motivated apprentice who can help with a lot of the basic requests. As with anyone working in support they can always escalate to 2nd line support if there is an issue that they cannot help with.

Apprentices interested in this pathway through Tech LDN are naturally curious and have demonstrated their skills in support through helping out family members with their computer problems, through work experience or even another accreditation.

The Tech LDN Apprenticeship is a natural progression to those not interested or able to go down the university route

Throughout their Apprenticeship, they will work toward various modules with our IT Support and Infrastructure Learning and Development Specialist. They will improve their IT Systems and Networks knowledge as well as building up a wealth of on the job experience with the most common of issues that the company encounters.

74% of Tech LDN Apprentices are offered roles by their employers at the end of their Apprenticeships

What a great way to get to know a company’s IT infrastructure. It’s, therefore, no surprise that almost 74% of Tech LDN Apprentices are offered roles by their employers at the end of their Apprenticeships, through building their proprietary knowledge and their qualification they are a real asset to any business.

We hold Career Kickstarters for Tech LDN throughout the year, so get in contact with me at james@ldnapprenticeships.com to be considered as one of our Tech LDN partners and invest in the future of your company.

What makes an AWESOME Apprentice?

What makes an AWESOME Apprentice?

When you hire an apprentice you are not hiring skills.

You are not hiring someone that you can rely on for their Excel abilities, for their ability to write great sales copy or for their fantastic C# coding skills.

What you are hiring is a blank canvas.

You are hiring someone who has made the decision with their life to get out into the world of work and DO IT!

“You are hiring someone who has made the decision with their life to get out into the world of work and DO IT! “

You can shape them, guide them, pick them up when they fall and help them create something incredible.

And what do we look for from our budding apprentices for our apprenticeship programmes?

Trust me we don’t test their Excel skills!

What we do look for is EEWAP (Energy, Enthusiasm, Willingness to learn, Ability to take feedback and Propensity to TAKE ACTION).  The best apprentices turn up to work everyday, with a notebook and pen and take notes, they ask questions and they grow.

The best apprentices can inspire through their energy and enthusiasm, making the whole company sit up that bit straighter and take notice.

The best apprentices can remind us all what it was like in our first role when we didn’t know anything and all we had was our youthful positivity and work ethic to see us through.

“The apprentices in my team, remind me everyday of why I do what I do. They inspire me to inspire more businesses to invest in youth.”

The apprentices in my team, remind me everyday of why I do what I do.

They inspire me to inspire more businesses to invest in youth.

They inspire me to inspire managers to make the decision no matter how hard it might be, to invest their time in someone who will pay you back in effortenthusiasm and loyalty.

Why we don’t use CVs for Apprentices.

Why we don’t use CVs for Apprentices.

When we first start working with clients they invariably ask us to send over CVs of some of the young people we are working with.

However many are surprised when I have to share the fact with them that WE DON’T USE CVS!

What we have found after seeing hundreds and hundreds of young people’s CVs is that are next to useless when it comes to determining whether they are going to be a success as an apprentice.

We have had terrible CVs that have ended being great apprentices and really great CVs that have simply been a disaster.

This really hit home for me when we sent a selection of our prescreened candidates to a recruitment company looking to hire some apprentices and they rejected ALL of them at CV stage.

What were they expecting to see? 

And the great thing about that situation was we eventually hired one of those CVs for the LDN Group (they were fantastic – lots of energy and enthusiasm!), and all the other candidates went on to other businesses to complete successful apprenticeships.

We made the decision that we were not going to use CVs anymore.

So how do we introduce our employers to their future apprentices?

All of our employers come in for our Career Kickstarters to actually meet our young people and make decisions that way. This has lead to much happier clients and young people being assessed on their potential for growth and EEWAP rather than an archaic not fit for purpose CV that does neither manager or candidate any good when it comes to finding the best match.

And now we work with forward facing businesses who are looking to strategically use the apprenticeship model to hire stars of the future and support them in their development. Rather than working with businesses who are simply using the apprenticeship model to hire cheap labour based on their current skills.

Who do you think are going to succeed as businesses going forward in a world where young people have more and more choice of where to use their skills?

What common expectations do people have in your business or sector that you have rejected?  

You don’t train attitudes, you have to hire them . . . #EEWAP

I am sure that you have discussed in your workplace about people with a good attitude. And I am sure that you have heard the phrase:

“You don’t train attitudes, you have to hire them”  Richard Branson


We have all heard it but what do we mean when we say attitude!?

It seems such a throwaway attribute.

At LDN Apprenticeships we have spent some time thinking about what kind of attitude we are really looking for.

 And we look for it in all our prospective applicants, clients and team members.

We have an awesome acronym that we use to remember what attitudes we are looking for… EEWAP


That palpable feeling that you get when you sit down with someone. In almost every interaction that you have with someone there is an energy exchange – we are looking for people that bring the energy!


Often confused with energy; this is the focus and awareness of people towards whatever situation they find themselves in. Are they cognisant of the opportunity of working with us? Or with our clients? That’s the enthusiasm would want to see.


Willingness To Learn

The best people LOVE Learning and building their skills. As soon as you think you know everything you have lost. We want people turning up with a notebook, taking notes, asking questions and relishing the opportunity to continue their learning and development with us as a training provider sure but also with our clients who love learning just as much as we do!

Ability To Take Feedback

Be prepared and enjoy the feedback you receive. We encourage full 360 feedback. A lot of young people it is claimed by Simon Sinek struggle with feedback (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hER0Qp6QJNU). We want people that can take it, learn from it and then … (See below)

Propensity To TAKE ACTION

Probably the most important part of EEWAP! What’s the point of Energy, Enthusiasm, Willingness to learn or Ability to take feedback if you don’t then apply it! We want people that take action, learn and then take action again. We want forward thinking clients that create a culture of action where it’s staff can use its own initiative safe in the knowledge there won’t be any repercussions.

If you think you have EEWAP as a young person, client, member of staff we would love to hear from you!

You are the kind of person that we want to speak to everyday!! 🙂



James O'Donnell

At LDN Apprenticeships, we believe that apprenticeships are about making a difference. A difference to young people’s lives. A difference to local communities. A difference to business. We’re thrilled to be at the forefront of helping employers to use their#LevyForChange. 

On 6 April 2017 the world of apprenticeships changed forever. Employers who have a pay bill of more than £3m a year started paying the Apprenticeship Levy. From 1 May onwards, those same employers will have access to a Digital Account which will allow them to purchase and control their own apprenticeship programmes from an approved provider. At the same time, the rules on who is able to do an apprenticeship have changed significantly meaning that apprenticeships are now open to an even broader group of people (including graduates!). Check out our Ultimate Guide to Apprenticeship Levy Funding to find out more.

LDN Apprenticeships are experts at helping ambitious, growing companies to create new apprenticeship opportunities and at introducing local young people to them. We work exclusively with 16-24 year olds and our candidates are normally first jobbers, looking to break out of a mundane retail job, or to switch to a more practical educational pathway and kick start their career. Our apprentices work in a huge range of jobs, and follow one of our highly engaging apprenticeship pathways, which include:

–      Digital Project Admin                                    – Digital Marketing

–      Digital Client Services                                   – IT Support and Networking

–      Digital Finance                                                 – Software Development

–      Business and Administration                      – Network Engineering

Our apprenticeships offer an opportunity to all who are involved in them. An opportunity to make a difference. A difference to young people’s lives. A difference to local communities. A difference to your business.

And that’s why we’re thrilled to be helping employers to use the #LevyForChange. Get in touch with me or James O’Donnell to find out more.