Achieve Magazine: Winter 2020/2021 Edition

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APPRENTICESHIPS AT SALFORD CITY COLLEGE Frontier House Merchants Quay Salford Quays M50 3SR 0161 631 5555 Editor-in-chief Allan Milne Features Editor Jess Watts Art Direction Tom Davidson Guest Contributors Roy Cavanagh MBE Mandy Shepherd


winter 2020/21


WELCOME A welcome to this edition from the team.


CAV’S COLUMN Our regular columnist Roy Cavanagh MBE gives his latest advice on the world of apprenticeships within the context of the current pandemic.


CATCH UP WITH OUR APPRENTICE AWARD WINNERS Earlier this year we hosted our annual Apprenticeships Awards, celebrating the successes of our apprentices and their employers. Last month, we caught up with our apprentice award winners to see how they were doing.


INTRODUCING THE HENDERSONS: A FAMILY OF APPRENTICES Meet the Hendersons, father Scott and his two children, Holly and Ryan, who despite all being different ages, have one thing in common: they are all apprentices.


OUR LOCKDOWN STATISTICS During lockdown the apprenticeship team have been busier then ever, ensuring apprentices, employers and other stakeholders continue to receive the best possible service.




MEET THE NEW KELLOGG’S APPRENTICES Cereal giant, Kellogg’s UK, has partnered with Apprenticeships at Salford City College to offer an exciting opportunity for three new apprentices, Samir, Evie, and Cole who joined their team at the MediaCityUK based headquarters in Salford. BUSINESS TRAINING AT SALFORD CITY COLLEGE: LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT SOLUTIONS Following the successful development and implementation of a range of leadership apprenticeship programmes in recent years, we are delighted to confirm the launch of a new range of leadership programmes. APPRENTICE ON THE FRONTLINE: AN ACCOUNT FROM HEALTH & SOCIAL CARE APPRENTICE SARAH LOMAS “When Covid began, there was a sudden fear amongst carers that suddenly you were going from a job where you meant so much to your clients, and they relied on you along with family, to suddenly being the only thing they had and putting your life on the line each day.”


THE CO-OPERATIVE APPROACH: COLLABORATING IS THE KEY TO SUCCESS Earlier this year, retail group the Co-op recruited ten Customer Service apprentices in collaboration with Apprenticeships at Salford City College for the first time. We caught up with the team over a virtual interview to see how they were getting on.


WORKING TOGETHER TO CREATE A FUTURE FOR THE NEXT GENERATION “Put your hand up if you want to know what an apprenticeship is?” was the question the Apprenticeship Recruitment team asked to thousands of Year 11 High school students during National Apprenticeship Week. For many, this is when their whole journey began.


MANDY’S MESSAGE Since our last edition, Apprenticeship Recruitment and Business Development Team Leader, Mandy Shepherd, speaks of the challenges brought about by the recent COVID-19 pandemic and shares a huge thank you to our apprentices, employers and all staff involved.


THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A MORE IMPORTANT TIME TO EMPLOY AN APPRENTICE Over recent months, we have been urging employers to maintain their investment in apprentices, detailing the great attributes that new, young talent can have in supporting businesses through these turbulent times ahead.


FIRST PUBLIC SECTOR LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE OF ITS KIND LAUNCHED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH TWO OF THE COUNCILS IN GREATER MACHESTER At the beginning of December, Apprenticeships at Salford City College hosted their first Public Sector Leadership Digital Conference.

22 BECOME A DIGITAL SUPPORT TECHNICIAN APPRENTICE Take your next steps up the career ladder with Apprenticeships at Salford City College.


Welcome to the winter 2020 edition of Achieve! Inspirational apprentices 2020 is certainly a year that will go down in history. The challenges, difficulties and loss that the Covid-19 pandemic has inflicted on us has been immense, and sadly we are still not out of the woods yet. As we are all aware, the next three or four months are critical in terms of vaccine roll out and virus control. We are incredibly proud of and very grateful to all frontline and key workers who have supported the nation in recent months. We are extremely proud of the apprentices we support who have been involved in thr frontline efforts during the pandemic. We have many adult care apprentices across Greater Manchester who have worked tirelessly looking after some of the most vulnerable people in society. We have singled out Sarah Lomas (page 13) who has shared her experiences with us; her words are inspirational and provide a great insight into life on the frontline. We are also very proud of the many construction apprentices we have working for employers involved in developing the nightingale hospitals, maintaining all existing hospitals and crucial care infrastructure. We have other examples of apprentices we have working in logistics and other key business support functions, who have also played such an important role in recent times. Ensuring education continues has also been a key focus nationally. It is vital that our children, young adults and adults within education have been able to continue to learn and develop. We are very proud of the way our apprenticeship team and colleagues across Salford City College Group have continued to provide the best possible education and support. In March, our apprenticeship team had to adapt very quickly to limited face-to-face contact with apprentices. Fortunately, we have been implementing increasing digital solutions and practices over the last 18 months, and the resources and skills we have developed meant colleagues were able to respond quickly when face-toface contact was limited. As you can see from some of the statistics on page 8, we have continued to support apprentices and employers superbly well. By limiting our face-to-face activity, our teams have been on the road less, meaning that they can spend more time with apprentices digitally. This has had a very positive impact for many apprentices in uncertain times.


Time to be determined and focused on creating opportunities We are also immensely grateful to our employer partners for creating opportunities for new apprentices. Economic commentary indicates we are in unheralded times, and nationally, apprenticeship numbers are down as much as 70%. However, we have not experienced this. To date, we have started more apprentices then we had by this time last academic year, and many are new apprentices, recruited into new employment opportunities! With the Government announcing that they have extended the new apprenticeship incentives scheme for employers by a further two months, to the end of March 2021, we are more determined than ever to ensure we continue this upward trajectory. Apprenticeships are a great way for people to develop careers that will last a lifetime and we have to be determined and focused on creating opportunities for the people of Salford and Greater Manchester. One of the highlights of the year for Apprenticeships at Salford City College is being shortlisted for the learning provider of the year award in the prestigious annual national Learning Awards. Feedback from the judging panel to date has been very positive, highlighting the fantastic opportunities, we, in partnership with our employer partners and stakeholders, create for local people. The final decision on the award winners will be announced early 2021. The judging panel made very positive comments about the passion and motivation displayed by Apprenticeships at Salford City College staff. We are so very fortunate to employ some of the most talented and passionate people in the sector. They have supported apprentices, employers and each other so very well in what has been some of the hardest times any of us will experience and we are very grateful for this. Finally we would like to wish you all a very safe and happy Christmas and hope 2021 is kind to us all. Stay safe, Allan Milne



Head of Apprenticeships

Head of Apprenticeship Delivery

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CAV’S COLUMN “A champion of training for young people.” Roy Cavanagh MBE has remained with the major contractor, Seddon, for over 50 years. He received an MBE for his services to construction and is renowned for his efforts in campaigning for apprenticeships and training for young people across Salford and the UK. Roy is passionate about anything Salfordian as he was born and raised in the city and has lived in Ordsall, Little Hulton and Worsley.

ROY CAVANAGH MBE A VERY DIFFERENT TIME! The whole world changed in March, but when will we see it return to ‘normal’? There are many people and families suffering in various different ways but I really hope we don’t forget the young in all of this. I make no apologies for repeating a mantra of mine, ‘Who taught you? - ‘Who gave you a chance?’. It seems as though everybody is adapting to new ways of working, but how do the young as apprentices or trainees, fit into all this? Offices are virtually empty, there is widespread closure across the retail sector, and the hospitality industry, in particular, is being severely tested. So, what steps can be taken to ensure the young people of our communities are supported throughout this challenging time?

2021 will be a huge year for all of us. Lets hope some sense of normality does return and we can really work hard to bring new apprentices into our businesses. Stay safe everybody in these trying times and where or if you can, please help the young.


We all really need to search for new ideas, ways to help matters, perhaps those of you reading this have some - if so, I’m sure the team at Apprenticeships at Salford City College would welcome a conversation.

WE STILL NEED TO CREATE OPPORTUNITIES Across all sectors, where possible, we still have a social and moral responsibility to create opportunities for our youth. The new Kickstart scheme will help this, but it is vital that we continue to use the apprenticeship levy and government apprenticeship funding for smaller organisations to support the development of new apprenticeship opportunities. Our businesses need the skills and motivation these individuals can offer now and in the future.




Earlier this year, we hosted our annual Apprenticeships Awards, celebrating the successes of our apprentices and their employers. Fast forward to the present day and things couldn’t look any more different. Over the last eight months, the world entered a global pandemic and many businesses had to adapt. Last month, we caught up with our apprentice award winners to see how they were doing. Scan the QR codes next to each apprentice to watch an interview with them.

Bonnie Cassidy | Frenkel Topping

Overall Apprentice of the Year Financial & Accountant Services Apprentice of the Year “Winning the Overall Apprentice of the year award has given me the motivation to succeed in my apprenticeship and become and a fully qualified accountant.”


Campbell Girvan | Casey

Building Services Engineering Apprentice of the Year “In the future, I would like to work towards becoming a site manager with Casey and my apprenticeship has definitely allowed me to get started on that path.”.



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Eleanor Dean | ASPIRE

Business & Professional Apprentice of the Year “Over the last few months, my routine has changed quite a lot, with me now having to work from home. However, I have been concentrating on promoting Aspire through our social media channels and spreading positivity.”


Nathan Butcher | Seddon

Construction & The Built Environment Apprentice of the Year

“I have gained so many skills from my apprenticeship that will not only benefit me in my career but that will also help me in day-to-day life.”



Haniyeh Kooravand | Lida Hair & Beauty Hair & Beauty Apprentice | Student of the Year Winner

Hair and beauty apprentice Haniyeh has an amazing story to tell. She came to the UK to pursue her dream career. After beginning a fine art course at university in Iran, her amazing artwork was condemned for not aligning to Iranian values. She relocated to the UK where she undertook an an English speaking course at City Skills. Through this course, she developed an interest in hair and beauty therapy, and with the help of the apprenticeship team after finishing the course, Haniyeh undertook an apprenticeship whilst being employed at Lida Hair & Beauty Salon. During her apprenticeship, Haniyeh won the ‘Student of the Year’ award for Hair & Beauty. She was nominated for her outstanding attitude to learning, displaying total commitment and passion for her subject and continuing to engage with both her fine art hobby and her apprenticeship throughout lockdown despite the salon being temporarily closed due to Covid. “My apprenticeship has benefited me in all ways. My favourite thing about it is that I’m actually in the work place as a professional. I’m so pleased with the journey that I’ve had.”


Myles Littlewood Cara Brickwork Trainee of the Year

Cheree Stevenson Salford City Council, Citywide Services

Natalie Aikens-Moulson Banana Moon Day Nursery

Hospitality & Catering Apprentice of the Year

Childcare & Early Years Apprentice of the Year

Jason Cunningham Wigan Council Health & Social Care Apprentice of the Year

Our other award winners include: Leadership & Management Apprentice of the Year: Anne Connolly | Manchester Carer’s Forum


Sector Based Work Academy Award: Susan Heywood | NHS

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FAMILY apprentices Scott Henderson

Holly Henderson

A FAMILY DRIVEN TO SUCCESS Meet the Hendersons, father Scott and his two children, Holly and Ryan. Despite all being different ages, they have one thing in common: they are all apprentices. We caught up with each of them to find out more about their different experiences. Despite the family all residing under the same roof in Salford and all undertaking apprenticeships, the Henderson’s apprenticeship pathways are all very different. Father Scott Henderson had been working on the front line for 24 years before changing jobs and joining Salford City Council as a Waste and Recycling Officer. Scott explained: “When I left my old job, I knew that I could do more. I was looking to progress further in my career. The apprenticeship has been a way for me to enhance my skills as a team leader and managing staff.” Scott’s leadership and management apprenticeship has allowed him to build upon his existing skills. The apprenticeship is a great way for individuals to enhance their confidence and progress into higher roles within their business. He added: “Since starting the apprenticeship, I have learnt so much in terms of leadership. I have found the project management elements of the apprenticeship really useful. Learning about how to deal with the difficult conversations you may have to have with staff has also been incredibly beneficial.” For both Holly and Ryan, their journeys started at a younger age. Holly Henderson started her apprenticeship at the age of 16. After a few weeks at a local college, she knew that it wasn’t the right pathway for her. After researching online and talking to the Apprenticeships at Salford City College Recruitment Team, she found the business administration apprenticeship. Holly explained: “As soon as I had found this apprenticeship, I knew I was on the right path. It was more suited to my needs and ambitions. There is also a really clear progression route once you have finished.”

Ryan Henderson

Whilst currently working at City Skills, Holly’s role has recently changed from a Student Services Officer, to an Attendance Officer. She said: “I’ve really enjoyed the experience of working in education and it’s something that I see myself pursuing.” Similar to Holly, Ryan Henderson started his apprenticeship straight out of school in September 2019. After dreaming of becoming a Civil Engineer for as long as he can remember, Ryan knew that an apprenticeship was the way forward after school. The professional skills and knowledge that comes along with working whilst learning, benefited Ryan tremendously and gave him the motivation to succeed. A year into his apprenticeship at Stegta, Ryan has developed a wide range of work-based skills. He explained: “I have picked up a lot of the professional work-based skills such as punctuality, dressing smart and just being around people, and it has developed my teamwork skills and overall communication. I have also had to use a lot of technology and software that are specific to the industry, which has been really interesting to learn how to use effectively.” For each of the Henderson’s, the journey doesn’t finish there. For Scott, once he has finished his apprenticeship he will be ready to progress onto the Level 5 apprenticeship with higher managerial roles in sight. Holly has enjoyed working with young people so much, that she is hoping to move into a role within pastoral support. For Ryan, as soon as he completes his apprenticeship he’ll be ready for the industry, adding: “I can’t wait to get as many projects under my belt as I can, so I can move on to even better things.” If you would like to follow in the footsteps of the Hendersons and start an apprenticeship, then contact the Apprenticeships at Salford City College team on: 0161 631 5555 or

So far Holly has developed the key skills required to succeed in any role within the business sector. She added: “The apprenticeship is really good and it gives you an understanding of how a business runs and a look at the ‘behind the scenes’ of an organisation. It teaches you all the different components you have to take into consideration when working within a business.” 7


OUR LOCKDOW During lockdown, the apprenticeship team have been busier then ever, ensuring apprentices, employers and other stakeholders continue to receive the best possible service. Here are some of the statistics to prove it...






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WN STATISTICS The pandemic has also allowed our Apprenticeship team to achieve some positive outputs:





The apprenticeship team have also worked super hard to support each other throughout the lockdown to date:











Meet the new


Meet Samir, Evie and Cole, the new commercial apprentices at Kellogg’s UK, based at their MediaCityUK office. Scan the QR code to hear from each of them what they are most excited about for their apprenticeship and future.

Cereal giant, Kellogg’s UK, has partnered with Apprenticeships at Salford City College to offer an exciting opportunity for three new apprentices, Samir, Evie, and Cole, to join their team at the MediaCityUK based headquarters in Salford. This will be the first time that Kellogg’s have offered an apprenticeship scheme at its head office. The three new recruits will have the chance to gain three years’ experience with the company. The newly introduced roles will provide the apprentices with hands on experience in several commercial teams including sales, marketing and supply chain. Allan Milne, Head of Apprenticeships at Salford City College, said: “We are delighted to be working with Kellogg’s on this innovative apprenticeship programme. The opportunities available will ensure that the apprentices will receive a fantastic experience with a great organisation.”


The successful apprentices will gain two qualifications with Apprenticeships at Salford City College, completing a Business Administrator Level 3 Apprenticeship in the first year. The apprentices will then determine their final two years and decide to join the sales or marketing team – resulting in either a Sales or Marketing Executive Level 4 Apprenticeship.

Chris Jones, Kellogg’s HR director UK & Ireland said: “I am very pleased to introduce the first ever commercial apprenticeship scheme to the Kellogg’s MediaCityUK office. This is a great opportunity for the apprentices to get hands-on and varied experience with the UK’s favourite breakfast brand – gaining invaluable qualifications along the way.”

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Kellogg’s Staff Scan the QR code to hear from Emma, Nat and Chris about why hiring the three new apprentices has improved their business over at Kellogg’s.

Chris Williams, Trainer Assessor, talks the apprentices through their induction process.

The apprentices have been engaging in digital sessions with colleagues at Kellogg’s to support them whilst working from home.



Following the successful development and implementation of a range of leadership apprenticeship programmes, we are delighted to confirm the launch of a new range of leadership programmes into the non-apprenticeship market. Delivered by our experienced team of Management Associates, the leadership development courses are designed to align to identified business needs and leadership development requirements. Allan Milne, Head of Apprenticeships is proud of the development, saying: “We have a fantastic team of employed Associates who deliver real, high-quality leadership development solutions. We want to be able to support our employer clients with not only apprenticeship provision in this area, but also very bespoke shorter programmes also.” Allan added, “In response to Covid, it is so important for all leaders across businesses to be at the top of their game and continue to develop their skills, knowledge and experience. Our solutions will certainly help with this.” The range of courses include: • Level 3 Award in Effective Coaching (ILM) • Level 3 Award in Effective Mentoring (ILM) • Level 3 Award in Leadership & Management (ILM) • Level 4 Managing Equality & Diversity (ILM) • Level 5 Award in Leadership & Management Skills (ILM) • Level 5 Award in Leadership (ILM) For more information contact or contact 0161 631 5555.



Aaron Hayes

Roger Cunliffe

Aaron has nine years of experience in supporting apprentices in the lifelong learning sector. As a qualified Assessor and IQA, Aaron has supported the development and delivery of quality apprenticeship programmes.

Roger’s specialism is the delivery of project management, leadership, management and human resource qualifications, together with bespoke training courses for commercial organisations. Roger has been within the educational sector for 15 years.

Karen Finney

Rachael Holt

Karen delivers a range of different qualifications in sectors including leadership and management, finance and school business professional. Karen has been in the work-based learning field for 12 years now, and prior to this, was working as a manager herself.

Rachael has a wealth of experience in apprenticeships, having worked in education since 2003. Rachael is a qualified Trainer Assessor, she has worked as a Quality Manager, Delivery Leader, and Work-based Learning Manager.

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When Covid began, there was a sudden fear amongst carers that suddenly you were going from a job where you meant so much to your clients and they relied on you along with their family, to suddenly being the only thing they had and putting your life on the line each day. We had no idea what was to come and we had to take each day as it came. It suddenly became scary, and yet, more rewarding than ever. I always adored my job and would give my last ounce to my clients, but this was on a whole new scale. Suddenly, you weren’t just looking after their physical needs, you were looking after them mentally and emotionally. We had the clients who didn’t understand what was going on and you were suddenly walking around in a mask, apron and gloves and they didn’t understand - that was hard. I remember walking in and singing and dancing for my clients, making a fool of myself to try and make them smile and distract them from the crazy times we were living through and how different I suddenly looked. The biggest complaint was that they couldn’t see the smile on our faces. The power of a smile is more than people understand. Clients suddenly couldn’t see their family or friends and you became their one piece of sanctuary. Their faces lit up when they saw you more than ever and suddenly companionship was just as important as any personal care you could give.

“Imagine having to say goodbye to your Grandad via Zoom?” The hardest part was losing the clients who sadly passed away from Covid and you couldn’t be there like you normally could. You couldn’t hug family members, go to funerals or anything. I remember one client who was at end of life, and I went in one morning knowing he was going to pass. I spent 12 hours keeping him comfortable, supporting the family and showing them how to use Zoom to say their goodbyes. Not being able to hold hands and hug family members was hard. Imagine having to say goodbye to your Grandad via Zoom? The family were incredibly grateful, and they said they couldn’t have done it without me as they didn’t understand technology - so to be there to help in even the simplest ways was great. We lost many clients and although it is part of the job, it was made harder. I remember a client lying on my shoulder crying due to being very poorly and then when we found out she had Covid, we suddenly had to get tested and that’s when you realised that you were putting yourself on the line every single day. I got Covid myself and it was so hard to know I wasn’t able to be there for two weeks for my clients. They are your priority and it plays on your mind. After completing my apprenticeship, I started a new role with the NHS working at 111. I may not be face-to-face with clients now, but I still get to spend every day helping people. Again, I see the downside to Covid - I hear people who have it, I hear people who can’t get operations or district nurse visits quick enough because there just aren’t enough resources. It is a really hard time and we have all realised how important frontline workers are in day-to-day life like never before. It’s been scary, it’s been sad and it’s been hard work. I haven’t had any time off apart from being ill with Covid in nearly a year, the last thing you needed was time off, you worked through it because they needed you, but it has been worth every second. To go home each day knowing you made a difference is everything. I can safely say that being in a career you love and enjoy means you don’t even realise what an incredible job you’re doing. Every single person deserves a huge pat on the back for what they’ve done this year, working on the frontline or not, we have all made a difference.






THE CO-OPERATIVE APPROACH: COLLABORATING IS THE KEY TO SUCCESS Earlier this year, retail group the Co-op recruited ten Customer Service apprentices in collaboration with Apprenticeships at Salford City College for the first time. After two months working in their headquarters in Manchester, we caught up with the team over a virtual interview to see how they were getting on.


lans for an apprenticeship programme in partnership with Apprenticeships at Salford City College originally stemmed from a wider initiative in the Co-op sphere: ‘My Co-op Career’. This is a framework used to organise all the learning and development opportunities available to colleagues, helping them find their own path. In 2019, the Co-op’s People team started to plan out a way to introduce this new programme in to the group’s Business Services function. Laura Bullen, Learning and Development Programme Manager at Co-op, said: “After much discussion about the value that apprenticeships could add to Co-op Business Services, we identified that our Sales and Service team had plans to take on more work in 2020. “This gave us the opportunity to introduce apprenticeships in this department as part of their recruitment plans. Our Sales and Service team were passionate about bringing in new talent; this passion alongside the expertise of our L&D, Resourcing and Apprenticeships teams (which led to our partnership with Apprenticeships at Salford City College), is ultimately what enabled us to deliver these apprenticeship opportunities. ”

“It really is a two-way process, it’s not just about the young people learning from the older people within the organisation. It works both ways within any business, whatever sector.” Through Apprenticeships at Salford City College, the Sales and Service team were able to access a more diverse range of candidates. Laura explained: “We were determined to bring people into the business who may not have normally passed our interview process, because of lack of previous experience in a contact centre, for example. Our Resourcing team set up an assessment process which focused on our Co-op behaviours using scenarios rather than asking candidates about their prior experience We wanted to widen participation and social mobility.”


For businesses and organisations, apprenticeships are an investment. Spending the time and resource to nurture apprentices sees the business benefit from valuable new talent and a new perspective within the workforce. Louise Timperley, Apprenticeship Manager at the Co-op, explained: “Apprenticeships are a great way of doing business. It’s a way of bringing in new creative ideas and new technology skills whilst injecting more energy into your organisation. These are all the things you want to address when you are recruiting.” “The best thing about apprenticeships, for me, is linking new talent with experienced individuals within the business. It really is a two-way process, it’s not just about the young people learning from the older people within the organisation. It works both ways within any business, whatever sector.” Starting in the midst of a global pandemic the ten newly recruited apprentices started their induction at the Co-op through a series of virtual induction sessions. But as the measures relaxed and it was safe to do so, the team were able to reunite in the Co-op’s central Manchester headquarters. Nicole Heath was working in a show jumping yard in Macclesfield, but was let go due to Covid-19. This was all before starting her apprenticeship at the Co-op in Customer Service. She commented: “So much of the role is talking to people and building on our communications skills. Since working here those skills have dramatically improved for me.” Gabby Savage-Dickson graduated from university in the summer with a degree in illustration and animation. She found herself then working in bar job that she didn’t enjoy. She explained: “My degree field was quite narrow and there weren’t a lot of job opportunities at the time of me leaving university, given the pandemic. I enjoyed working at Co-op so much while I was studying that when I came across the apprenticeship, I thought it would be perfect for me.” Six weeks into the Customer Service apprenticeship, Gabby explained that she has already learnt so much from the team. She added: “My IT skills have really improved throughout all the training that we have received. I haven’t really been on a computer since I was 18 at college, so coming here and learning all about IT has really helped me.”

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For these apprentices, the future is bright. With many avenues to go down within Co-op, there are endless possibilities. For Nicole, the goal is to work her way up in the head office to a higher position in the future, but for Gabby, working within the community is her ambition. She explained: “I definitely think that working in the community is something that I would like to do. I did a couple of units within my degree on community arts and other projects like that. Co-op offer a lot of funding for community projects and it’s something I would really like to pursue in the future.” The man in charge of mentoring these apprentices is Matt Davidson, the Sales and Community Team Manager. He has been with the Co-op for almost five years, over which time his team has grown from 25 to around 600 people across different sites in the UK and South Africa. Speaking about the mentoring, Matt said: “I have loved every second of working with these apprentices. To watch ten strangers come together and create their own little family in the space of two months has been amazing. They’re such a tight-knit group and it’s amazing to see how they have stuck together and really looked out for each other.” He added: “To walk past and see them working together so well has been a testament to their hard work and it’s so nice to see as a manager. We’ve still got another 13 months to go, but I’m really excited to see where this takes them.” If you are wanting to find out more about Apprenticeships at Salford City College, contact the team to find out more on 0161 631 5555 or email




“Put your hand up if you want to know what an apprenticeship is?” was the question the Apprenticeship Recruitment team asked to thousands of Year 11 High school students during National Apprenticeship Week 2020. For many, this is when their whole journey began. As the recruitment team stood in school assembly’s across Salford and Greater Manchester before lockdown, answering any questions around Apprenticeships, little did their audience know they already had an abundance of recruitment opportunities ready for this summer’s applicants. Recruiters’ priority is to ensure that they headhunt for apprenticeships and talent match accordingly, whilst also identifying what support the applicant needs. This could be Industry advice, interview support or general confidence. The expert recruitment team at Apprenticeships at Salford City College work extremely hard every month prior to the summer to ensure that every student is prepared for the world of work. “Asking a young person ‘what do you want to be when you’re older?’ always makes me wonder” said Recruitment Leader at Apprenticeships at Salford City College, Mandy Shepherd. “In every presentation I deliver as I use myself as an example.” She continued: “When I was younger I told everybody I was going to work on a beach, no specific job role, just a desire to work on a beach. So I left school, studied Travel and Tourism and ended up working in a Travel call centre based in Salford (with no beach in sight). When I ask young people now to identify job roles on a beach, the answers are a waitress, a lifeguard or a sales person for excursions. Looking back, I wouldn’t have been very good at any of these. My point here is, nobody ever asked me what job I wanted on a beach, and this shows it’s not just about recruitment. It’s the in between that counts. Anybody can apply for an apprenticeship, but do they really know what the role is? How at 16 do young people know what the role will be like if they have never worked in the industry.” With apprenticeships becoming more popular year on year, the relationship between school careers teams and the apprenticeship recruitment team also becomes stronger. This year the teams have focused on industry knowledge and preparing young people for an apprenticeship at the earliest opportunity. This started as large groups and then moved onto workshops, one-to-one sessions, employability preparation, CV preparation, employer conversations and role play interviews to show candidates how employers see their applicants.

One of the schools that the Apprenticeship team worked closely with is Moorside High School. Career’s Advisor, Simon Farmer, said: “I have been delighted with the engagement from the apprenticeships team and the high level of support they have provided for our pupils here during the last academic year. The team delivered informative group sessions to pupils interested in learning more about apprenticeships. From this, pupils wishing to be considered for apprenticeships were then scheduled in for a one-to-one discussion with one of the recruitment team to discuss their own individual career aims, which was important to me as this provides a much more personalised process.” He added: “I am so thankful to the team for helping us to have some fantastic destinations for some of our Year 11 leavers this year - we are looking forward to sharing more great outcomes next year!” One of the students from Moorside High School, Callum Thwaite, was delighted to have been accepted onto his apprenticeship upon leaving school. He explained: “The support from Mr Farmer and the apprenticeship team was fantastic. The team were already speaking to employers before I’d even had the chance to finish school. This made me feel more confident upon leaving and now I couldn’t be happier in my Joinery apprenticeship.” As the partnership between schools and apprenticeships grows, so does the amount of progression opportunities. Sarah Scanlan, Head of Participation for 14-19 year olds at Salford City Council, explained: “It is a delight to see how effectively Salford schools and the apprenticeship team have continued to engage digitally and regularly over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. I am equally pleased to see that strong progressions into apprenticeships are continuing and I hope they can together build on these partnerships next year to support even more young people into meaningful opportunities.” If you are an employer who is looking to speak to school leaver’s, please call one of our Apprenticeship advisors today 0161 631 5555. Equally, if you are a partner wanting more advice on how we can support your students in 2021, please call 0161 to arrange a meeting.

Speaking about the partnership between the apprenticeship team and the career’s advisors, Mandy explained: “This year we faced the hardest year that nobody will forget. With school closures and GCSE exams cancelled, for many young people their destination was unknown. During this time, I was extremely grateful of the relationship we already had with students seeking apprenticeships, as we had already hosted a number of activities allowing us to get to know these students. This enabled us to move to digital support during lockdown, with both the students and their careers advisors across the city. As the team look back to February 2020 when they first met some of students, they take pride in how far they have come over the last few months with many now in apprenticeships. The feedback that the team have acquired from both employers and schools has been a testimony to their hard work.



WINTER 2020/21

Mandy's Message Since our last edition, Apprenticeship Recruitment and Business Development team leader Mandy Shepherd speaks of the challenges brought to us with by the recent COVID-19 Pandemic and shares a huge thank you to our apprentices, employers and all staff involved.

This has been an unbelievably challenging year everyone, nothing could have prepared us for the year that we have all had. There have been so many uncertainties and challenges to every organisation. Sat waiting in our recruitment pool was an abundance of fantastic applicants from right across the City. These young people were about to leave school or college with a predicted grade and unsure of their next steps. This was one of the most challenging times our recruitment team had ever faced and we made it our priority to ensure support was tailored to each individual. The delivery team adapted to digital learning and we became a digital recruitment service. We supported employers with government grants and managed to prevent redundancies by working with the local authorities on the displaced apprenticeship grant to ensure our apprentices remained in employment. The first lockdown in March now feels like a long time ago, and since then we have watched businesses and candidates grow to work around the pandemic. Together we have learnt how to work around a pandemic and continue to drive apprenticeship opportunities together.This year our team has had an even closer relationship with employers than ever before.


For any em apprenti ployer who recr ce from uited/wil Aug l recruit you may an be eligib ust 1st 2020 - 3 le for th 1 will need e Appren st March 2021, to apply tice via GOV help, co .UK acco ship Grants, and nta unt. apply for ct Mandy. There the gran is still tim If you need ts! e to rec ruit to At this ti me of ye ar, we us celebrato ually inv ry ite y place this Christmas lunc h. Due to ou for a year, our th wish you re a very M cruitment team is not taking erry Ch Year. w ould lik ristmas a nd a Hap e to py New

With the help of the government grants, our number of SME employers is higher than it has ever been at this time of the year. Seeing our apprenticeship start rate being higher than usual at this time of year, truly reflects on this. This is an unbelievable achievement for all. On behalf of the Apprenticeship recruitment team I would like to thank all employers we are currently working with for your continuous partnership to create apprenticeship opportunities. As a team, we would like to say a huge congratulations to all of our 2020 apprentices. The determination we have seen this year to create futures for yourselves is immense and something you should be incredibly proud of.



0161 631 5581 07540 672 476 mandy.shepherd@salford cc.a ord www.salf


As a team, we are extremely proud seeing our new apprentices in their employment and hearing fantastic feedback. Our team has shown a huge amount of dedication and flexibility and worked harder than ever to create a better future for young people. I’d like to say a special thank you to our clients, we truly could not have done this without you.



Youth unemployment levels have rocketed in recent months as the lockdown period has really had a negative impact on entry level jobs, with an additional 154,000 young people out of work. This huge growth in unemployment risks impacting the future of this current generation for many years to come. Over recent months, we have delivered a marketing campaign urging employers to maintain their investment in apprentices, detailing the great attributes that new, young talent can have in supporting business through these turbulent times. Millennials are the first generation to have completely grown up in a digital era and have skills and expertise in this area that many of us can only dream of.

The Government have backed this up by offering significant grants to employers who recruit new apprentices into their business, which, attached to already existing support, can provide employers with up to £3,000 per apprentice to help with costs. The new incentive scheme runs until the end of March and is beginning to have an impact. Louise Jones, Employer Services Leader at Apprenticeships at Salford City College, commented, “The incentives are really starting to have an impact, with employers recognising that the financial support will help them bring fresh new talent into their business at a time when they need it the most. Most businesses have rapidly expanded their digital operations and processes and this really suits the apprentices we are providing them with”. Head of Apprenticeship Delivery, Karen Kenny, has also worked hard with the apprenticeship delivery team to ensure a new apprenticeship programme is being quickly introduced. The Digital Support Technician programme is proving to be popular with employers, developing the skills within their business. Karen commented, “The new digital apprenticeship standard will enable employers to help develop digital skills across their business, so they have the capacity to train and support other staff.” See page 22 for more information on this standard. Prior to lockdown, the apprenticeship sector was on a very positive trajectory, following a period of major reform and improvement. The Government is determined that this continues, and the incentives are vital in ensuring this happens. Apprentices need employment and employment can only come from committed employers who see the potential in developing brilliant, young talent in their business. The talent and passion available is amazing, so now is the best time to let them have a positive impact on your business. For more information on how you can recruit an apprentice for your business with us, contact us on 0161 631 5555 or email


WINTER 2020/21

HEAR WHAT SOME OF OUR EMPLOYER PARTNERS SAY TRACEY ATKINSON, DIRECTOR OF HR Frenkel Topping “It’s been a challenging year for everybody, with Covid, but that shouldn’t stop anybody taking on an apprentice. It’s important to us that we are supporting the community, the local colleges and that we are getting staff in that have got many talents that we want to bring out in them.”


JOHN WALMSLEY, DIRECT SERVICES MANAGER Casey “We want to invest in the talent of tomorrow. As a company we are heavily for giving local people chances. Partnering up with Apprenticeships at Salford City College really helps us to access the local community, but not only that, to give them meaningful training.”


PAULA SUMMERFIELD, DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Aspire For Intelligent Care & Support CIC “I think you will probably find that when an apprentice comes on board they are highly motivated, they are enthusiastic, they are very eager to learn and have a great work ethic. They bring a different dynamic to the organisation.”





At the beginning of December, Apprenticeships at Salford City College proudly launched Digital Leadership Conference Week. The conference is the first of its kind, and was an exciting feature of the new Public Sector Leadership Programme, designed in partnership with Salford City Council and Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council. The programme is a unique development opportunity for managers to gain first-hand access to Senior Leaders within both organisations and benefit from their vision, insight and experience. The course content has been developed closely with both organisations to inspire excellence in public sector leadership. Participants are able to achieve either a Level 3 or 5 apprenticeship, including an accredited qualification through ILM. The conference was delivered virtually over three days to over 80 apprentices, leaders and associates. Apprentices heard from their Chief Executive Officers and senior leaders about their leadership journeys, what leadership means to them, and their vision of the future for leaders. The final day closed with a highly engaging and inspiring session by leadership developer, Rene Barrett, who spoke about building high performing teams through kindness, positivity and resilience. The conference offered opportunities for apprentices to reflect on the sessions in small breakout rooms, to encourage discussion and networking with colleagues across both organisations Jim Taylor, CEO Salford City Council, set the scene opening the conference with a fascinating reflection of his own experience of leadership within the public sector. “Leadership is action, not a position; what you do and how you behave is instrumental in developing a positive culture.” Leadership during the Covid-19 pandemic was a running theme throughout the conference, and how adaptability is crucial for effective leadership. HR leaders Tracy Brennand (Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council) and Sam Betts (Salford City Council) opened Wednesday’s conference with an enlightening session on ‘The Future of Work’. Tracy Brennand, Assistant Director for HR & Organisational Development at Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council, explained: “Leadership has certainly come to the fore over the


last year. Leaders old and new have had to adapt their style and approach, allowing others to navigate the challenges and accepting that we don’t always have the answers, we have to be bold and reach out to others to ensure that we are able to lead and support others through a crisis.” Steven Pleasant, CEO of Tameside Council, opened the final day of the conference with his insight into leadership. “Leadership is changing. The job I do now is very different from the job I did ten years ago when I started my role as a Chief Executive. It is about people, their emotions, their drivers, their motivations, it’s a hands-on thing. If I’ve learned anything about leadership, it is that it is fundamentally about empowering people, giving them the permissions and the tools to lead. Head of Apprenticeships, Allan Milne, hosted the conference over the three days and said: “All week, the sessions were inspiring, thought provoking and interactive. It was wonderful to see the participants enthusiasm and I particularly enjoyed their reflections and contributions. From the fantastic feedback we know attendees have been given a refreshed outlook, taking away innovative leadership skills to apply in their practice.” Here’s what some of our apprentices had to say: “The speakers were inspirational. All of the discussions were relevant to my role and my course. It was excellent to see the vision directly from the executive leaders.” “All three sessions have promoted me to reflect on my own practices and made me look at ways to improve my leadership skills.” “I feel inspired to become a better leader and feel I have gained a better perspective of what a leader is.” If you are interested in finding out more about the Public Sector Leadership Programme, then contact the Apprenticeships at Salford City College team on: 0161 631 5555 or


Call us today on 0161 631 5555 Or email



Greater Manchester is home today to a fastpaced, fast-growing £5billion digital ecosystem. - The Telegraph

A CAREER IN DIGITAL SUPPORT The broad purpose of a Digital Support Technician is to maximise the effective use of digital office technologies, productivity software, and digital communications, including collaborative technologies, and digital information systems to achieve objectives. In their daily work, Digital Support Technicians interact with a wide variety of internal or external users of digital systems, through digital channels, by phone and/or face-to-face.


IT Support Technician

effectively to achieve objectives

Digital Support Officer

Monitoring and operating complex digital

Senior Digital Support Specialist

information and intelligence systems

Telephone & Digital Service Supervisor

Responding to user enquiries

Customer Support Engineer

Maintaining data, digital resources and data

Digital Service Specialist


Network Technician

Communicating effectively though digital

Digital IT Analyst






channels •

Learning through digital resources

Working as a member of a team

Maintaining an awareness of current, emerging and fringe digital technologies




solutions and implementing these in the organisation 22



Building Services Engineering

Accounts/Finance Assistant

Building Services Engineering Craftsperson

Advanced Credit Controller

Building Services Engineering Installer

Assistant Accountant

Building Services Engineering Service & Maintenance Engineer

Assessor Coach

Building Services Engineering Technician

Business Administrator

Electrical Installation

Customer Service Practitioner

Gas Engineer Plumbing & Domestic Heating Technician Construction Craft Bricklayer Carpentry & Joinery Carpentry & Joinery (Advanced) Groundworker Painter & Decorator Plasterer

Associate Project Manager

Customer Service Specialist Digital Support Technician Data Technician Financial Services Credit Controller Financial Services Risk Officer Operations Departmental Manager Professional Taxation/Accountant Public Service Operational Delivery Officer School Business Professional Senior Financial Services Customer Advisor Team Leader/Supervisor

Professional Construction Civil Engineering Technician Construction Quantity Surveying Technician Construction Site Engineering Technician Construction Site Supervisor

APPRENTICESHIPS AVAILABLE Adult Care Worker Lead Adult Care Worker Leader in Adult Care Lead Practitioner in Adult Care

APPRENTICESHIPS AVAILABLE Advanced & Creative Hair Professional Beauty Therapist Commis Chef Hair Professional Hospitality Manager Hospitality Supervisor Hospitality Team Member Production Chef Senior Production Chef

APPRENTICESHIPS AVAILABLE Children, Young People & Families Manager Children, Young People & Families Practitioner Early Years Educator Early Years Practitioner Teaching Assistant Learning & Development Practitioner







0161 631 5555 apprenticeshipssalford-city-college