Upskill your Kickstart employees

Did you know that you can upskill your kickstart employees onto a Modern Apprenticeship after they have finished their 6 month placement?

 

If you are offering your kickstarter a permanent position they may benefit from being enrolled onto one of our Modern Apprenticeships. These are industry recognised qualifications which demonstrate to both employers and customers that the learner has met a benchmarked standard of skills and knowledge.

 

From Business and Administration to Digital Marketing to Providing Financial Services there are qualifications suitable for a a variety of roles and sectors.

Suitable qualifications

 

Business and Administration

This qualification is suitable for those who are in an administrative, sectorial, assistant or receptionist role.

 

In this qualification candidates will develop skills in a range of areas such as:

  • Typing
  • Organising and Planning meetings and events
  • Customer service
  • Managing business resources
  • Organising business travel or accommodation
  • Handling mail
  • Meeting and welcoming visitors and providing reception services

This qualification has a number of finance units making it suitable for those in payroll, credit control or cash room roles:

  • Calculate pay
  • Control payroll
  • Account for income and expenditure
  • Draft financial statements
  • Manage budgets

Business and Administration Framework

 

Digital Marketing

This qualification is suitable for someone who is in a digital marketing role or undertake this as part of their job role.

 

In this qualification candidates will develop skills in a range of areas such as:

  • social media and email marketing,
  • website development
  • Key words and search engine optimisation
  • Analyse and Report data
  • Imaging and Video Software

Digital Marketing Diploma Framework

 

 

Digital Applications

This qualification is for candidates working in offices who deal with application software. It is a broad-based qualification allowing some scope for specialisation in structured data processing, web or multimedia applications or helpdesk application support.

 

In this qualification candidates will develop skills in a range of areas such as:

  • setting up IT Systems,
  • using computerised accounting software
  • using drawing and planning software
  • using design software

Digital Applications Diploma Framework

 

 

Customer Service in the Financial Services Sector

The qualification is designed for candidates who work in a customer service role within:

  • banks
  • building societies
  • debt collection
  • insurance
  • pensions
  • mortgages
  • financial planning

Customer Service in the Financial Services Sector Framework

 

 

IT

This qualification is for candidates who work in the IT and Telecommunications industry and deal with tasks of a high level of complexity.

In this qualification candidates will develop skills in a range of areas such as:

  • diagnosing faults,
  • providing proactive and reactive technical advice,
  • providing remote support,
  • developing/managing IT systems,
  • networking principles and systems architecture

Information Technology Framework

 

 

Apprenticeship Delivery

 

To upskill your kickstart employee they must have finished their 6 month placement and  be employed for at least 16 hours a week.

 

All of our qualifications are now developed remotely using our E-Portfolio platform One File and Microsoft Teams/Zoom. Each candidate is matched with an assessor who they virtually meet with one to one on a regular basis at a time which is suitable for them. The assessor will also be available for support in between meetings. With a wide range of units all of our qualifications are tailored to meet the goals and skills gaps of our learners and their employers.

 

To enquire today contact us at enquiries@microcomtraining.com

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: Clyde Travel 

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: Clyde Travel 

  

This #ScotAppWeek22 we’re sharing the experiences of some of our employers and Modern Apprentices to show that #ApprenticeshipsWork.

 

Today we’re putting the spotlight on Clyde Travel who are Maritime, Offshore, Renewables, and Corporate Travel Specialists with offices across the world. Clyde Travel is another company we work with that sees the value of developing the next generation of talent for their business through taking on Modern Apprentices. Last year Microcom Training partnered with Clyde Travel to recruit 4 Modern Apprentices. They recently began their training, which is being delivered by  Siobhan who began her career at Clyde Travel as an apprentice and is now a Training & Development Consultant. We caught up with them to hear how they’re getting on.

 

We heard from Chanel about why she chose a Modern Apprenticeship with Clyde Travel and the skills she has developed through her apprenticeship.

 

Why did you decide that a Modern Apprenticeship was right for you? What were you doing before you started your apprenticeship?

Before starting my apprenticeship, I was studying travel and tourism at college, from studying this topic I knew I wanted to pursue my career in the travel industry. I then decided to join Clyde Travel as a modern apprentice as I was keen to expand my knowledge pf the travel industry, the apprenticeship so far has helped me get a feel of a full-time job and the roles and responsibilities I’m expected to undertake while working here.

 

Tell me about the job role you’re in and what you have learned from doing a Modern Apprenticeship?

The current job role I’m in is an apprentice travel consultant. So far, I have gained an understanding of the technology used to create bookings for clients and know how to distribute these in a professional manner. I have also gained great communication skills as I can interact with the other modern apprentices and the staff within the company.

 

We heard from Isla about how a Modern Apprenticeship has helped her get into the industry she was interested in and what she has learned so far.

 

Why did you decide that a Modern Apprenticeship was right for you? What were you doing before you started your apprenticeship?

I was in school, looking to leave, and came across this modern apprenticeship which was right up my alley because I have always wanted to work in the travel industry or office work.

 

Tell me about the job role you’re in and what you have learned from doing a Modern Apprenticeship?

I have learned how to use Amadeus to book flights and availability, transfer traveler and company profiles in and I have also gotten to know and understand what all the codes mean that we need to use to put in Amadeus.

 

 

We also heard from Lucy about how a Modern Apprenticeship fits her style of learning.

 

Why did you decide that a Modern Apprenticeship was right for you? What were you doing before you started your apprenticeship?

 

I went to university for a few months and realised it wasn’t for me I kept wondering why and it’s because there was no on-the-job learning. I hated being given a book and expect to memorise. The reason I picked this Apprenticeship was that it was something I was interested in. I love learning and appreciating different places all around the world.

 

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people?

 

Yes, I would because you get a bit of everything, for people who are doing college and a part-time job don’t get a break whereas we are getting that job experience and also getting a qualification. Definitely good for people who are better at on-the-job training and memorising notes isn’t going to help they need to practice.

 

Finally, we heard from Tamlynn about why she felt a Modern Apprenticeship was right for her.

 

Why did you decide that a Modern Apprenticeship was right for you? What were you doing before you started your apprenticeship?

I decided that a modern apprenticeship was right for me as I was at school before my apprenticeship, and I don’t enjoy the schools’ learning environment as I need to be active in working while learning so when I got offered this place, I knew it was right for me.

 

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people?

Yes, I would definitely recommend doing a modern apprenticeship as it is on-the-job training and there is more support doing an apprenticeship than what you get going straight to a job.

 

L-R: Siobhan, Isla, Lucy, Chanel, and Tamlynn.

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: Holmes Mackillop

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: Holmes Mackillop

 

This #ScotAppWeek22 we’re sharing the experiences of some of our employers and Modern Apprentices to show that #ApprenticeshipsWork.

 

Today we’re putting the spotlight on Holmes Mackillop a firm of solicitors who specialise in commercial legal matters with offices located in Glasgow and Johnstone. Holmes Mackillop are one of the many employers that we work with who are investing in the next generation of talent by recruiting Modern Apprentices.

 

We heard from Carol Ann, the Practice Manager, who has been involved in the hiring of the new apprentices.

Why did your business decide to take on an apprentice?

We have a long history of recruiting younger members of staff through the modern apprenticeship scheme. We see it as a very effective way to recruit for our administration team and it offers the grounding and experience these young people may need to allow them to make decisions about their future career paths.

 

How has taking on an apprentice benefited your business?

Getting a young person straight from school brings new fresh ideas into the practice and allows us to offer training and support that will enhance our business and assist the apprentice in the future.

 

How many apprentices have you taken on and where are they now?

Probably between 20 – 25 over the years. Most have gone to establish careers in an office environment.

 

What kind of jobs are your apprentices doing within the business?

Our apprentices start off with basic admin duties, answering the telephone, greeting clients, scanning etc, if they show an aptitude for accounts, we offer training and further qualifications in that area.

Would you recommend other businesses to take on an apprentice?

Absolutely, we have had some fantastic apprentices over the years who have gained further qualifications after completing their apprenticeship and stayed with us before moving onto senior roles within other firms. We are proud to have been able to give these young people an introduction to work and helped them progress to better things, be it college, university or a more senior role within another company.

 

We heard from Abby who is currently working towards a Business Administration SCQF level 6 Modern Apprenticeship at Holmes Mackillop. She told us about what she has gained from her Modern Apprenticeship and how it has helped her find the career path that is right for her.

 

Why did you decide that a Modern Apprenticeship was right for you? What were you doing before you started your apprenticeship?

Before I started my apprenticeship I was in my last year of school and wasn’t sure if I wanted to go to university without being certain if this career choice was really for me, I decided to speak to my careers advisor as I ended up leaving school and wasn’t sure what I should do, I looked at the options I was given and liked the idea of a modern apprenticeship. I then decided that this could be a good gateway into the work I would like to be doing. I wanted to see what working in a law firm would be like to see if this would be the job I wanted to stick with for the future and seek further education for.

 

Tell me about the job role you’re in and what you have learned from doing a Modern Apprenticeship?

I work in an admin role within Holmes Mackillop, from this I have learned numerous skills that I can continue to use in the future including building on my interpersonal skills. From my apprenticeship, I have learned a lot about the business environment and the qualities you must possess to succeed within your field of work. This has helped me as I’ve become surer of the path I’m taking and will continue down this road.

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people?

Yes, I think it’s a great way of figuring out what you really want to do if you’re not sure about university or the career path you have chosen as it offers an opportunity for a qualification and experience within the chosen work environment and role.

 

Have you finished your qualification? If so, what are your next steps now you have completed your apprenticeship?

I am currently still working towards finishing my qualification, after this is complete, I would like to then go to college to complete a legal studies course which will hopefully take me to university where I can then go on to do a course on criminology.

 

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: TaxAssist Accountants

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: TaxAssist Accountants Edinburgh East

 

This #ScotAppWeek22 we’re sharing the experiences of some of our employers and Modern Apprentices to show that #ApprenticeshipsWork.

 

Today we’re putting the spotlight on TaxAssist Accountants Edinburgh East. They are one of the many businesses that we here at Microcom Training have a long-standing relationship with and over the years they have taken on multiple apprentices through us to help them to run their business.

We heard from Hannah, one of the Partners at TaxAssist, who has been involved in the hiring of the new apprentices.

 

Why did your business decide to take on an apprentice?

I am passionate about creating jobs and career opportunities for young people in our local area.

 

How has taking on an apprentice benefited your business?

Claire has been a breath of fresh air and is keen to progress her studies and her career with us. She clearly has a good head on her shoulders and a fantastic work ethic.

 

How many apprentices have you taken on and where are they now?

We have had two other apprentices before Claire – both finished their apprenticeships with us and have now moved elsewhere to fulfil their career goals.

What kind of jobs are your apprentices doing within the business?

Our Claire is responsible for covering offices, dealing with telephone calls and walk in visits from clients, but mainly she deals with bookkeeping for our accounts, tax return and VAT return clients.

Would you recommend other businesses to take on an apprentice?

Absolutely, it’s a no brainer.

 

We also heard from their current Modern Apprentice Claire who is doing Business and Administration Modern Apprenticeship level SCQF 6 with a focus on finance.

 

Why did you decide that a Modern Apprenticeship was right for you? What were you doing before you started your apprenticeship?

I decided that a modern apprenticeship would be best for me compared to the other possible routes to becoming an accountant as I learn best working and physically doing things rather than being in a lecture hall. Apprenticeships also appealed to me more as you earn a wage whilst learning rather than being in debt with a student loan and you get lots of relevant experience rather than just textbook knowledge. Before starting my apprenticeship, I was working part time in Ikea alongside school.

 

Tell me about the job role you’re in and what you have learnt from doing a Modern Apprenticeship?

I am currently a trainee accountant. I have been doing spreadsheets for limited accounts and sole trader accounts. I have processed receipts through Dext and bank statements on QuickBooks whilst doing VAT returns. I have been answering client queries on the phone and in person which have included taking payments using online software. I have been given the responsibility to complete work and tasks on my own which has built up my confidence. From this modern apprenticeship I have learnt university isn’t the only path into a successful career and when you leave university you may have no actual experience whereas with an apprenticeship you have been in gaining experience from your first day. I have already learnt so many relevant skills and got a good insight to accountancy in the workplace.

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people?

I would recommend a modern apprenticeship to other young people yes! It may take longer to get to where you want to be but there is so many pros that outweigh that such as gaining experience, learning in real life scenarios, getting paid whilst learning and making many more new friends.

 

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: Green Cross Training

#ScotAppWeek22 spotlight: Green Cross Training

 

This #ScotAppWeek22 we’re sharing the experiences of some of our employers and Modern Apprentices to show that #ApprenticeshipsWork.

 

Today we’re putting the spotlight on Green Cross Training who  are a Hamilton based provider of Health & Safety training and consultancy services courses. Like all businesses COVID has changed the way their business is run and taking on Modern Apprentices has helped them to do this.

 

 

We heard from Lynn, one of the managers at Green Cross Training who has been involved in the hiring of the new apprentices.

 

Why did you decide to take on apprentices?

 

When covid hit, the way we were running the business had to change very quickly. We needed more hands-on-deck and decided to bring apprentices into the business.

 

How did you find the process of hiring apprentices through Microcom Training?

 

Really straightforward. The applications of the candidates sent forward were high quality and since taking on our apprentices their assessor always gives us regular updates on their progression through their qualifications. Chloe and James are fantastic employees and throughout their time here we’ve seen their confidence improve dramatically.

 

 

We then heard from Chloe, who is currently completing a Business and Administration Modern Apprenticeship SCQF level 6, about her experience.

 

 

What were you doing before you started this apprenticeship?

 

Lying in my bed really! I had worked in ASDA, but I wasn’t really doing much!

 

Why did you decide to start a Modern Apprenticeship?

 

I knew that I wanted to work, earn money, and learn more, so an apprenticeship was the perfect path for me.

 

What was the experience like of getting a Modern Apprenticeship with Microcom Training?

 

Very easy. It took less than a couple of weeks, it was unbelievably fast!

Tell us about the job and qualification you’re doing at the moment?

 

I’m on the business and admin qualification. I’m a processer, I issue out the certificates and deal with any queries.

 

Do you enjoy it?

 

Yeah, I love it! I like that I’m still learning new things through the qualification while having the work experience.

 

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people?

 

100%! I think it’s the best way to go. It’s a great alternative to other forms of higher education that don’t really suit everyone.

 

 

We also heard from James, another apprentice working at Green Cross Training. He has successfully completed the Business and Administration Modern Apprenticeship level SCQF 6 and is now working towards an IT Modern Apprenticeship.

 

What were you doing before you started your apprenticeship?

 

Before my apprenticeship, I was in college, but when lockdown hit, I wasn’t very motivated, so I ended up dropping out. I didn’t know what path I wanted to go down and didn’t want to commit to another degree. So, when my mum recommended a Modern Apprenticeship, I thought it would be a better fit.

 

How did you find the experience of getting hired through Microcom Training?

 

Really good, I was given all the important information and preparation for the interview with Green Cross Training. I felt confident going into the interview. Can’t fault it!

 

What’s the job role and qualification you’re doing now?

 

The qualification I just finished is in business and admin and now I’m doing the IT qualification which is more technical. In my job role, I do a variety of things such as sending emails, talking on the phone, doing spreadsheets, and other general administrative tasks.

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people?

 

Definitely. In school, it’s really drilled into you that college or university is the next step but, there are other valid options and other paths you can go down that might be more suitable for you!

Employer of the Month Belvoir Lettings

At Microcom Training, we get to work with many employers to help them bring apprentices into their organisations.

One of the businesses we’ve had the pleasure of working with is the Belvoir Property Lettings Agency. We’ve helped their Dundee, Perth and Falkirk branches to successfully recruit apprentices.

We talked to Aimi, the Regional Manager of Dundee, Perth, Falkirk and Glasgow North about her experience working with Microcom Training to take on apprentices in the Perthshire branch.

 

Why did your organisation decide to take on an apprentice?

The Apprenticeship Scheme has always been of interest to us.  We had an immediate requirement for administration support during the lockdown and successfully recruited two apprentices in our Perth Branch.

How did you find the process of hiring an apprentice through Microcom Training?

Microcom Training were diligent and excellent to deal with – from sifting CV’s to arranging our candidate interviews – the process was seamless.  Amy Ritchie has been helpful throughout.

Did taking on an apprentice benefit the business?

Yes – they bring a fresh outlook and enjoy learning!

What kind of jobs are your apprentices doing within the business?

Apprentices have a variety of tasks from call handling to inbox management, arranging contractors maintenance visits and providing administrative support to the Property Managers.

How many apprentices have you taken on and where are they now?

We have four apprentices in four of our branches.

What are the benefits of upskilling your employees onto other courses after they have finished their apprenticeship?

The apprenticeship allows the candidates the opportunity to find out what area they like the most in the day to day job, they can hone their skills based on their preference and we then up-skill on that basis.  The candidate benefits from strengthening and refining their knowledge.  From a business perspective, we have candidates working in a variety of areas in the business and working towards becoming champions within that sector – for example, two of our candidates are currently progressing through a Digital Applications diploma.

Would you recommend other businesses to take on an apprentice?

Absolutely, Microcom Training can provide valuable help and job match the right candidate for your vacancy.

 

We also talked to Sarah, one of the apprentices working at Belvoir. We asked about her apprenticeship journey so far.

What were you doing before you started your Modern Apprenticeship?

Before I was here at Belvoir Lettings, I had just finished my last year at school. I was supposed to be going to college but I decided that it wasn’t really for me and I wanted to try something else.

Why did you decide that a Modern Apprenticeship was right for you?

I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, I was having weekly meetings with the careers adviser from school trying to figure out what I was going to do.  Due to the pandemic, there wasn’t really anything that interested me and then I saw the ad for the apprenticeship and it immediately appealed to me.  I loved doing admin at school so I thought I would enjoy doing it as a job, so I applied.

How did you find your experience of getting an apprenticeship through Microcom Training?

It was very quick and easy. I applied and within days I got a message to confirm my pre-screen interview.

Tell me about the job role you’re in and the qualification you are working towards?

I am a letting assistant and I am currently working towards the Digital Applications Diploma.

Are you enjoying the Apprenticeship? What about it do you like?

Yes, I am, it’s really good! I love how every day is different, there are certain things that sort of have a routine but overall, no two days are the same in the office.

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people?

Definitely! It is such a great opportunity.  I’ve learned so much and genuinely enjoy what I am doing now.

Candidate of the Month – Aurora at GM Instruments

Here at Microcom Training, we love sharing the success stories of our apprentices who are developing their careers, gaining employment and qualifications with us. One of these success stories is Aurora who started her Business & Administration apprenticeship with GM instruments. She shared her experience with us:

Tell me about the job role you’re in and the qualification you are working towards?

The qualification I have been working towards since starting with GM Instruments is in Business and Administration. The tasks that I do include order/invoice processing through our SAP software, responding to telephone and email enquiries and much more!

Are you enjoying the Apprenticeship? 

I am really enjoying the Apprenticeship as it has allowed me to become more confident in myself and the work I do. I love that every day is different and there’s always something new to learn.

How did you find your experience of getting an apprenticeship through Microcom Training?

Even before starting my apprenticeship within GM Instruments, Microcom Training were great at supporting me as they explained the application process, helped me prepare for my interview and even after this, they were always there to offer me any guidance.

What are your future steps now you are moving onto your second modern apprenticeship through Microcom Training?

Now that I have completed my Business and Administration Modern Apprenticeship, I am moving on to do a Digital Applications Diploma.

This is a great opportunity for me to continue my learning and hopefully contribute more to my job. I’m really looking forward to the next step.

Would you recommend doing a Modern Apprenticeship to other young people? 

Definitely, it’s a great way for anyone to gain an extra qualification or enhance their skills whilst working. There can be so many apprenticeships to choose from, so it’s a really good way for anyone (especially school leavers) to move into the next steps of their careers.

Employer of the Month – Virtue Recruitment Services

Microcom Training has helped countless employers to recruit apprentices into their companies. Last week we headed out to visit one of those businesses to find out how their apprentices were getting on and share their experience of hiring through us.

As we arrived at the offices of Virtue Recruitment Services in Hamilton, we were greeted by the three smiling apprentices we had recruited into the job over the last few years, Robyn, Amber and Melissa.  As they showed us around the building it was clear to see how well the girls got along with each other and how comfortable they are in their place of work. As they showed us around, we asked them about how they were getting on in their apprenticeships.

 

 

Amber told us: “When I finished school, I was unsure what career path I wanted to go down. I was getting careers advice from Skills Development Scotland and they recommended that I should have a meeting with Microcom Training. I very quickly had an interview with Virtue Recruitment Services, it was local and in Business and Administration which was exactly what I was looking for!

 

Microcom Training helped me prepare, giving full instructions on what would happen and once I was offered the apprenticeship, explained how the qualification would work, how long it should take and the support I would be given.

 

The Business and Administration Modern Apprenticeship was a really good experience. It has helped me to do my job better and given me the confidence to grow into my role. I’ve now enrolled onto the Digital Marketing Diploma and I really enjoy the aspects of social media marketing and feel really happy when I generate a sale from my posts!”

 

 

Robyn also shared her story: “I was at college and not enjoying the course, as I feel I am more of a practical learner. I thought that a Modern Apprenticeship would be a good option for me. I was offered a Modern Apprenticeship very quickly after enrolling with Microcom Training. Once I achieved my qualification, I moved into a new role and started the Digital Marketing Diploma. I have now finished this and I’m now moving onto a Management Modern Apprenticeship to help me in my new role where I will be responsible for managing the warehouse staff, allocating work, managing budgets and responsible for Health and Safety. I love learning and by doing the Modern Apprenticeships, I can gain more qualifications, get practical work experience and do my job to the best of my ability.”

 

We asked Melissa how she was getting on with her Management course that she had recently enrolled onto, she told us: “I am really enjoying the Management course, my assessor has been amazing. He’s really helpful, and friendly I’ve found the course really helps me to understand my role within the company and how I can monitor my own performance. “

 

After talking to the apprentices we asked Stuart Craig, the Managing Director of Virtue Recruitment Services why he had decided to take on apprentices: “In the early days of VR, I was hesitant to recruit a suitable colleague that may have had “recruitment” experience. I wanted to teach the “VR ethos” as opposed to inheriting another organisations’.”

 

On his experience hiring through Microcom Training he said it was, “Very straightforward. The team at Microcom Training have made it their business to get to know ours.”

 

He continued. “Recruiting apprentices has benefited the business many times over. To date, the apprentices have forged themselves a career by embracing the core values of the whole organisation.”

 

Virtue Recruitment’s apprentices were upskilled from Business and Administration to Digital Marketing and Management. We asked how upskilling the employees had benefited the business?

“Not only does our business benefit from the expanded knowledge the employees gain but utilise the initiatives as part of continuous personal development. We actively promote a culture of “Train our colleagues so they have the ability to leave but treat them so well, they don’t want to”.

 

Our final question was, “Would you recommend other businesses to take on an apprentice?” Stuart told us:

 

“Yes. I am a member of many council and business forums and actively promote not only the development of our young and growing workforce, but indeed Microcom Training for their excellent services.