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Apprentice FAQs

Apprenticeships come in all different levels, for all different jobs, and can be for all different ages once you’re over 16. In short, an apprenticeship is a job, with on the job training. You will earn a wage, get a minimum of 20 days holiday a year. On top of this you will learn, and be assessed on, a set of skills that are needed for that sort of job. An apprenticeship is a great option after you leave school at 16, after college at 18, or as an adult to gain new skills and qualification for your job.

Apprenticeships generally last between 1 and 4 years. This depends on the level you are studying at, and how long it takes you to complete the requirements for that apprenticeship. You will be paid a wage and will get holidays just like your other colleagues. If you are 16 to 18 years old and still in compulsory education an apprenticeship, or apprenticeships, will cover those 2 years of mandatory training.

An apprentice is entitled to National Minimum wage. Right now that is £3.40 for apprentices under 19 and if you’re aged over 19 and in your first year of your apprenticeship. It’s worth remembering that this is the minimum and some employers pay far more, especially for apprentices in careers where there is a shortage of skilled people.

You will be paid for your normal working hours, which will be a minimum of 30 hours per week and any training that is a part of your apprenticeship, normally this is one day a week.

You will be paid by your employer like their other employees. Most employers will require you to have your own bank account that can accept payments.

There is no guarantee that you will be employed at the end of your apprenticeship, although we have a great track record of getting our apprentices into work with their present employer at the end of the apprenticeship.

Yes, you will receive a qualification in that specific field as well as a set of skills that employers are looking for. Most employers are looking for employees that have specific skill sets, rather than just a qualification.

An apprenticeship is the gold standard in workplace learning. As well as a set of job specific skills, you will receive a nationally recognised qualification. There are four levels of qualifications:

Intermediate Apprenticeships

These are level 2 qualifications. Other level 2 qualifications include GCSEs with grades A*- C, National Certificates, and BTEC Level 2 qualification. An Intermediate apprenticeship is equivalent to 5 GCSE grades at A* to C.

Advanced Apprenticeships

Advanced Apprenticeships are level 3 qualifications, the same level as you would normally take a Further Education College, such as A-levels, or BTEC Level 3. An Advance Apprenticeship is the same as 2 A Levels.

Higher Apprenticeships

At levels 4-7 this covers qualifications from Higher National Diplomas, all the way through to Degrees. A higher apprenticeship is the equivalent of a Foundation Degree.

Degree Level Apprenticeships.

These cover the two highest levels 6 and 7 that you can get for an apprenticeship. Level 6 covers degrees, and Level 7 covers Masters degrees and similar courses.
Here at Apprenticeships Manchester we offer a range of apprenticeships, for 16-18 year olds straight out of college, for young adults looking to take the next step towards mastering their chosen career, and for those already secure in their career looking to upskill.

There are slight differences in each apprenticeship, but in general, they are a process of continuous assessment. This means you will need to be able to prove you have completed a task or gained that specific skill before you can be considered to have completed that part of the assessment. You will be in college, usually one day a week and there will be assessments set by the college as well.

You will work alongside trained staff at the place where you undertake your apprenticeship, as well as that you will be attending college for around one day a week. You will receive guidance at each step of your training.

Click on the apprenticeships section to see what apprenticeships we have available. We will be able to work with you to support your application.

For most apprenticeships, you need a minimum of GCSE Maths and English at a C or above, although on many courses you can take these alongside your other studies. If you feel that you need more qualifications, work experience, or other core skills there are Traineeships that you can take, these are normally 5 months in duration and there is some funding to help employers progress you from a traineeship to an apprenticeship.

You must be a minimum of 16 years old to start on an apprenticeship, as you move up through the levels of qualification you will need to have completed other qualifications first, meaning that

Only you can decide which route is correct for you. Whilst it might seem that a traditional education is the way to go, in fact, a significant number of graduates are earning less than the average wage an apprentice would earn, and as an apprentice, you won’t be starting your working career with a mountain of university debt.

There are some careers that need traditional education alone, but most careers now a days need a set of skills, and employers are less likely to need a qualification alone.

You will be working full time, a minimum of 30 hours a week, and a maximum of 40 hours. On top of your 30 hours a week you will also do one day a week in college usually.

Yes, you get a minimum of 20 days holiday a year which you will accrue as you work, so if you’ve worked for 6 months you will be owed 10 days holiday. Remember that 20 days holiday is 4 weeks in total for most jobs.

You will have a qualification, for example, if you have completed an advanced apprenticeship you will have the equivalent of two A-Levels. You can carry on to a Higher Apprenticeship, which will give you the same as a Foundation Degree.