The job market can seem daunting for a school leaver, graduate or career changer. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to get your foot in the door – and becoming an apprentice or trainee can be the first step toward a new career.
Depending on your chosen path, you may have the opportunity to earn as you learn. Although the average apprenticeship pays £4.30 per hour (Source: Gov.UK), training courses can deliver much more.
Through our NVQ Level 3 Electrical Training Course, trainees go out to work in stage two of their training as paid trainees – with the average wage being £10 per hour.
While wages vary, any apprentice or trainee will gain invaluable skills, experience, and qualifications in their chosen field. And there are several things you can do as a trainee to make the most of your training and take it to the next level.
1. Be Punctual
The first thing to do with any training is to make sure you’re there to make the most of it.
Turning up even just a few minutes late can result in missing important information or practice – and can also result in disrupting your class or upsetting your mentor/employer.
2. Ask Questions
When working as an apprentice/trainee, ask if you are unsure. You are there to learn, and your mentor is there to teach, so take advantage of their skills and expertise.
Always ask questions, and do not pretend you understand just because you don’t want ask again or are not quite sure. I would rather explain something twice than think you understood and really you didn’t. ????
— Paul Barreca (@paulob19) January 17, 2022
You need to know what you’re doing, why, and how to do it. It is much better to ask and do it correctly than to go into a task unsure.
3. Pay Attention
Take advantage of your mentor’s knowledge by paying attention to what they’re saying and doing.
Working with and observing seniors in the profession is the best way to learn everything you need to know. You may also pick up a few extra tips and tricks.
4. Make Mistakes
It may sound counterintuitive, but making mistakes is a great way to learn.
Richard Colby, a former Options Skills student and self-employed gas engineer, agrees that making mistakes will help you to better learn how to make them right.
Balls it up in the training centre;
That’s what you’re there for
Learn how to make it right
Listen to the instructor
— Richard Colby Richard Colby Plumbing & Heating Ltd (@r_colby_85) January 16, 2022
There’s no safer space than a training centre. Making mistakes there means you’re less likely to make mistakes on-site.
5. Stay Organised
Whatever you may be using, whether it’s drills and screwdrivers or paperwork and pens, keeping your things organised shows professionalism and competency.
If a plumber turns up to a job with a messy van, they won’t do a good job convincing a customer they’re going to deliver high-quality work and a neat finish. Plus, it makes it easier to find things when you need them.
6. Be Enthusiastic
When your mentor asks you to complete a task, relish the opportunity. Taking on a job with confidence is an essential tip for apprentices.
Confidence is key, and practice makes perfect. The more work you do, the more you will learn and become skilled in your area of work.
7. Do Your Homework
There will be plenty to do when you’re on-site as a trainee, and you’ll learn a lot, but there’s no harm in learning a bit more.
Do background reading and watch how-to or explainer videos ahead of the next project to give yourself a general idea of what to expect and pick up some tips.
Be punctual courteous and pleasant we can teach you the rest do a bit of reading up watch you tube on the course your doing its nice to have an idea on what your up to
— Andy Cam (@CosyWarmPlumber) January 17, 2022
This will make your time on-site that bit easier and expand your knowledge, but it’ll also demonstrate your commitment.
8. Organise Your Time
As an apprentice/trainee, you’ll have plenty of theoretical and practical work you need to complete. To ensure that you get all your work done for any deadlines, it’s important to organise your time.
Leaving things until the last minute and rushing can lead to poor quality work and mistakes you could have easily avoided.
Whatever your apprenticeship or training course, try to network and gain exposure. Attend meetings, training events etc. Creating a network of people within the industry can lead to great opportunities in the future that you wouldn’t get otherwise.
Social media is an excellent place to network with your community, share your work and get advice from other tradespeople and trainees. So whether you’re looking to follow electricians or gas engineers, we’ve got you covered.
10. Don’t Give Up
There may be times when things are getting tough, and you question whether you can continue training. That’s precisely the time to start focusing on your end goal.
Don’t give up, it may seem hard at the time. But the benefits at the end are worth it— Luminous electrical (@LuminousElect) February 12, 2022
When challenged, you’re truly learning new skills and knowledge. So keep in mind how it will benefit you and push through.