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Preparing for an Apprenticeship

Applying for an Apprenticeship is a daunting prospect for many young people, as many have never had to write a CV, attend an interview or had a full time job.

We have produced some useful tips to help you when applying for an Apprenticeship.

CV Tips

A CV is the first thing an employer looks at when considering your application. Most employers spend just a few seconds reading through CVs, so it is important to make yours memorable. Follow these useful tips which will help make your CV stand out.

  1. Be concise, clear and snappy.
    Keep your CV to a maximum of 2 A4 sides of paper. Don’t ramble. Use short sentences and write about your most relevant experience.

  2. Ensure your CV is easy to read.
    Make sure a CV is laid out clearly so it is easy to read for an employer. Make use of headings and subheadings to break up sections, and don’t use a font size smaller than 11.

  3. Don’t Lie
    Never lie when writing a CV! Even if you think you don’t have enough experience, you will get caught out being dishonest. An employer will not expect someone on an Apprenticeship to have years of experience.
  4. Tailor your CV
    Tailor your CV to the specific job. Research what skills and competencies the employer is looking for and mention how you match these.

  5. Do not use slang or text speak.
    Write your CV in proper English and avoid clichés, slang or text speak.

  6. Write about your most recent experiences first.
    When listing your education and work experience, list the most recent first.

  7. Always proof read your CV
    Employers have a keen eye to detail when it comes to mistakes, so proof read and even ask someone else to proof read your CV.

  8. Ensure you are contactable
    You have done all of the hard work. Now make sure that your contact details are up to date and you check your emails and phone regularly. Also, use a professional email address. Using jokey email addresses will automatically deter employers from your CV.

Download more CV tips and advice.

Interview Advice

Congratulations for making it through to the interview stage. You obviously have the skills and enthusiasm that an employer is looking for. Follow these tips and you will be sure to impress the interviewers:

  • Time keeping skills
    • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled interview time
  • Enthusiasm
    • Research the role and the company and don’t be afraid to ask questions.
  • Good communication skills
    • Stay calm and maintain eye contact with the interviewer. Remember to smile.
  • Good personal appearance
    • Dress smartly and wear formal shoes, no trainers.
  • Potential for further development
    • Interviewers will look for evidence of a genuine interest, passion and the motivation to work hard for them.
  • Interest in the job and company
    • Research the company, a good place to start is always the company’s website. 

Common questions that you might be asked on the day include:

Why are you interested in this job?

What experience do you have?

What are your strengths and weaknesses?

What is your biggest achievement to date?

Why do you want to work for this company?

What do you do in your spare time?

Download more interview tips.

First day tips

Well done. You have secured an Apprenticeship. Follow these tops tips for your first day at work.

  1. Know the work dress code. Make a good impression on your first day; look smart, don’t wear trainers and make sure you smile.
  2. Make notes. Bring a notepad and remember to write down  important information about any work you have been set.
  3. Be confident. Even though you might be nervous, try and let your personality shine through. Be polite, friendly and enthusiastic
  4. Ask questions. Don’t be scared, if you are unsure of something, ask.
  5. Introduce yourself. Make the effort to get to know your manager and colleagues and try to remember their names.
  6. Do your homework. Have a clear understanding of what the company does.
  7. Test drive your route beforehand. To ensure that you are on time, practice the route and leave plenty of time beforehand. Try to arrive early on your first day.
  8. Congratulate yourself. Well done. You have got your job. Now make the most of your experiences and make a lasting impression.