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Finding a Job

Finding a Modern Apprenticeship Finding a part time or Saturday job Making the most of career events and job fairs Researching companies and organisations Using recruitment agencies Using social media to find work, and careers information Where to look for work

Finding a Modern Apprenticeship

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You’ve decided you want to look for a modern apprenticeship. But, where to start! 

Let us help you kick-start your search.

First things first

In many ways it’s the same as looking for any job. But, it’s worth knowing about some of the specific organisations that help employers to recruit and train modern apprentices. They include:

There are lots of different ways to find an apprenticeship. You might need to try several of them to find the right one for you. Here are the main methods.

Word of mouth or personal contacts

Use your personal network of contacts to help you find an apprenticeship. These might include: family, friends, neighbours and work placement providers. Maybe you also have contacts through a part time job, volunteering or your leisure activities.

Make sure your contacts know you’re interested in an apprenticeship, and what type of training you’re interested in. Maybe you could use social media to spread the word.

Job fairs, careers exhibitions and apprenticeship events

Visit career events, job fairs, recruitment events and industry awareness days. Look out for posters and social media posts advertising these events and make every effort to get along. Get networking; you could make some useful contacts.

Scottish Apprenticeship Week is usually held in May every year. During the week many colleges, training providers, employers and Jobcentres hold special apprenticeship events. These are an ideal way to get information about apprenticeships. Events will usually be advertised in the press, schools, colleges and libraries.

Contacting employers directly

Contacting local companies and organisations directly - on the off-chance that they are interested in taking on an apprentice – is crucial. First, you will need to do some research. 

Get online and find out about local businesses. You’ll find local firms through Yell.com, the UK local business search engine.

Look out for other ‘business directory’ websites, including those listing specific types of businesses. For example, the ‘Find a Licensed Plumber’ page on the SNIPEF website is useful in tracking down local plumbing companies (see below).

Most large employers now recruit their apprentices online, through their own websites. Typically, this will include companies and organisations such as: BAE, British Gas, BT, Greggs, NHS Scotland, First Scotrail, Sainsbury's, Scottish Water, Scottish Power and Rolls-Royce. Try searching for the company by name and add ‘apprenticeships’ to your search.

It’s important that you search their sites to find out about apprenticeship recruitment, the selection and application process and what they are looking for from applicants. In many cases you will also have to apply online.

Contacting your local authority

Local councils in Scotland offer a wide range of apprenticeships and usually recruit through their own websites.

Some local authorities also have special websites advertising local opportunities for young people, for example Edinburgh Council’s ‘Edinburgh Guarantee’ and Glasgow Council’s ‘Glasgow Guarantee’ websites.

They also recruit through the local government recruitment portal website Myjobscotland. Look for the search category 'Modern Apprenticeship/Trainee'.

Some may also post apprenticeship vacancies on recruitment websites, such as S1jobs, or use specific apprenticeship opportunities websites.

Apprenticeship opportunity websites

There are three in Scotland.

Local colleges and other training providers

Local colleges have links with local companies and often provide modern apprenticeship training for local businesses. Around 10,000 students in colleges are on modern apprenticeship programmes. So, at the very least they are useful sources of information on apprenticeship training. Why not take a look at their websites?

Contacting Sector Skills Councils, trade associations or professional bodies

In many industries Sector Skills Councils (SSCs) and other industry-led organisations play an important role in apprenticeship recruitment and training. Here are just a few examples.

For more information, and a full list of SSCs, visit the Federation for Industry Sector Skills & Standards website.

You’ll find the professional bodies that operate in different career sectors on the Profession Finder page of the Total Professions website.

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