How to Find an Apprenticeship

Finding the right apprenticeship requires thought. Doing several years work and getting your qualification is very much based on your personal motivation and degree of commitment. You also need to be sure of your career track, and have a good idea where you want to go with your qualifications. This is not a subject where you can guess about results.

Choosing your apprenticeship

With your choice come the practical considerations. Making a commitment is one thing, following it up effectively is another. Your choice has to be workable, something you're sure you can achieve and want to achieve.

These are the big issues in making your choice, and if you get them wrong you can sabotage yourself:

Skills. Are your skills good enough? Are you sure of your performance?

Motivation. Are you genuinely interested? Can you really say this apprenticeship will achieve the goals you want?

Ability to commit to the full term of the apprenticeship. Are you sure of your ability to do four years solid training? Are there any factors which might prevent you doing that?

Looking for an apprenticeship

The next, and very important stage is to find an apprenticeship which can deliver what you want. This is slightly easier than it looks. If you have a specific goal in mind, you can use that to track the way through stages of qualification back to the apprenticeship. If, for example, you want to own your own business as a tradesperson, plumbing franchise or a defense sub contractor, you can figure out what qualifications the job needs.

The career progression in trades is fairly simple, but you need to identify the career track correctly. This is a sample career track for the plumbing franchise:

  1. Apprentice plumber
  2. Qualified tradesperson, employee of plumbing company
  3. Independent plumbing contractor
  4. Own plumbing business
  5. Plumbing franchiser

This is a natural career progression, created by the apprenticeship. In this case an apprentice has gone from a teen trainee to a franchise possibly worth millions of dollars. As you can see, there's a very straightforward development of skills, experience and business interests. The plumber, in this case, will also have obtained business training and qualifications. The nature of each position spells out how the goal was achieved.

Finding  your apprenticeship

Now you know what you're looking for, finding the apprenticeship is a bit easier. But you still need to be selective and make sure you get a good apprenticeship. Most trades apprenticeships are properly organized, but some are better than others.

These are some important factors in selecting the right apprenticeship:

Specializations: If you have a particular goal in mind requiring specialization, you may need to select an apprenticeship with a provider who works in this area. If your specialization is advanced, the apprenticeship must cover the prerequisites for further training.

Quality: Some providers have excellent reputations as trainers in their industries. These are the best apprenticeships, the "name brands" in their fields. Their training and references are extremely good for future job applications and training.

Opportunities for advanced training: A select few apprenticeships can provide advanced training and very high value practical experience in the trade.