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09 March 2018

Melksham company talks apprenticeships and progression during National Apprenticeship Week

Apprenticeships are a valuable step into a career in any given field.
They offer people an opportunity to show employers that they are dedicated to working and learning and can progress within a company.
They also benefit employers by attracting new talent, offering a progression route and developing a motivated, skilled and qualified workforce, like at Avon Rubber plc.
The innovative company specialises in respiratory protection systems and milking point solutions by designing, testing and manufacturing products and services to maximise the performance and capabilities of its customers.
Joseph White, a 19-year-old Level 4 HNC IT apprentice at the Melksham-based company said: “After finishing my Level 2 and 3 IT courses at Wiltshire College, a higher apprenticeship was a great opportunity for me to further my education and my career prospects, especially working within a global business.”
Sid Hayden, who is facilitating the company’s levy project, is a firm believer of apprenticeships, as is the company, which currently has six apprentices in Engineering, IT, Leadership and Management, Sales and Marketing and Business Administration.
He said: “I see apprentices as the future of the business and want them to grow within our company.
“Apprenticeships allow us to mould and guide our apprentices’ way of working to fit within our business.
“Joseph has been a great addition to the team with helping to support the business.”

Under the company’s recognition program, CREED, where employees are rewarded for exceptional standards of work, going the extra mile, or over and above their normal day to day role, Joseph has already received three nominations from his peers, which shows he has made a great start to his apprenticeship and is already extremely well thought of by his colleagues.
The introduction of the apprenticeship levy in May 2017 requires businesses who have a wage bill of over £3 million each year to pay into it.

This money can then be accessed by levy paying businesses to recruit apprentices or to upskill existing employees through apprenticeships.
As a levy paying business Sid said: “This has really kick started adult learning and we have existing employees now carrying out higher level apprenticeships.”

Avon Rubber plc chose Wiltshire College to be its training provider for Joseph’s apprenticeship and staff have praised the College’s Training Consultant Brian Dobbin, who has “made the process of enrolling Joseph on his apprenticeship very smooth”.
Sid added: “Apprentices are a breath of fresh air and we will be looking to take on more apprentices in all areas of the business.”
“I would 100 per cent recommend apprenticeships and modern apprenticeships for levy payers.”