With the UK government pushing hard for an economic recovery, the concept of developing apprenticeships is firmly on the agenda.
Portable Offices were already ahead of the game implementing apprenticeship schemes within the company and in a dialogue with industry body – Modular and Portable Buildings Association (MPBA) about the development of an industry-specific scheme.
Portable Offices’ Derby office currently has two apprentices – Lewis Grainger (22) and Liam Ryde (20). Both are studying at JTL college, Derby towards their electrical engineering qualification.
Manager of Portable Offices Derby office, Bob Davies, said: “The apprenticeships are an exciting opportunity for youngsters to combine learning at a college/training provider with on-site experience to give apprentices the right mix of technical and practical skills and then put these into practice.
“Both Lewis and Liam showed exceptional talent in the electrical side of our work. This is an important element of our business and is vital to every contract we undertake.”
Lewis and Liam are working towards their Electrical Engineering qualification which is a four year one day a week release course at their local JTL college.
JTL is a not-for-profit charity, offering advanced apprenticeships in electrical installation, engineering maintenance, mechanical engineering services comprising plumbing, alongside heating and ventilating.
Lewis who joined Portable Offices three years ago, commented: “I am just going into the third year of my college course and am really enjoying it. Yes, it is challenging but it means so much more when you get the opportunity to put what you learn into practice in real time working situations.”
Lewis, who previously trained as a building/maintenance apprentice, was employed as a kitchen fitter before joining Portable Offices.
Liam is starting at college this year. He said: “I am really looking forward to starting my electrical training. There’s always lots of new skills to learn on the job but it is the electrical side that I find most challenging.”
Luton office also has an apprentice electrician – Adam Scott. Adam joined Portable Offices six years ago and started his electrician training at Luton’s Barnfield College four years ago on a day release basis. He is now qualified to NVQ Level 3 and is enjoying his qualified role working alongside Dan in the yard and on site.
He said: “I love the challenge of resolving any electrical faults issues that occur and the variety of work out in the field gives it a whole new dimension – it is really fulfilling.”
Manager of Luton, Dannielle Williams, commented: “Adam has put enormous effort into developing his skills. One of the most satisfying elements of seeing apprentices develop, is the ability to train them in good methods of working and watching them grow as a person.
“As a company, we are committed to providing every opportunity to our employees and, as soon as they show an interest in a specific niche, we will do our best to support their development.
“Adam has become a great asset to Luton.”
Managing Director of Portable Offices, Adrian Witty, commented:
“We have been lucky to find some exceptional young talent within the company and to develop their skills whilst giving them practical work out in the field.
“I am hoping we can work in tandem with the MPBA to develop an industry- specific apprenticeship going forward. In the meantime, we are giving our upcoming employees every opportunity to develop a rewarding career.”
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