Feedback from Medway businesses was that they were having trouble navigating the complexities of apprenticeship provision – including understanding apprenticeship frameworks and standards, providing study time and levy payments. Furthermore, businesses were not utilising the available levies.
Medway Council decided to provide apprenticeship support to all businesses, from enquiry and engagement through to apprentice placement. NSAR’s reputation for excellent apprenticeship services placed us in an ideal position to support Medway.
To ensure the success of the service, three clear objectives were defined:
- Engaging with at least 50 Medway businesses that could offer apprenticeships.
- Supporting Medway employers to identify 30 posts that could be filled by Medway residents.
- Supporting 10 Medway businesses to engage with the Levy Planner to enter their own data.
NSAR also provided resources for monthly drop-in sessions (post-pandemic) for local businesses to touch base and seek advice.
NSAR has contacted almost 600 businesses across the area, with approximately 130 meaningful engagements. From this, 44 organisations demonstrated a commitment to exploring apprentice opportunities further (34 percent). Eight organisations have taken on 20 apprentices between them. All apprentices are residents of the Medway area.
Several organisations laterally heard about the support available and were keen to understand more, so NSAR provided information as required. From this interaction, further apprentices were identified and will be enrolled on courses – adding to the success already achieved through the partnership.
We are continuing to support organisations as they progress through their apprenticeship journeys.
Case study: NSAR and Medway support a small business in Kent to train an apprentice
NSAR supported a driving school in Kent to train an apprentice, in partnership with Medway Council.
A-Class Driving School has been providing driving lessons for cars, motorbikes and heavy goods vehicles for over 17 years. They hired two new office administrators as part of the Kickstart Scheme run by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), which provided funding to create new jobs for 16- to 24-year-olds.
Emily and Sacha were initially responsible for taking calls, monitoring emails and managing the office space. As their confidence and capability grew, they took on more tasks – processing client payments, filing and managing post.
A-Class Driving School decided to offer Emily an apprenticeship, due to the amazing effort she had put into her role. They reached out to NSAR for support to get Emily’s training programme set up. NSAR found a training provider to assist A-Class in teaching Emily the skills she needed to succeed. We also put A-Class in touch with Medway Council, who were able to provide financial support through their Additional Restrictions Apprenticeship Fund.
A-Class said, “the partnership formulated between our business, the DWP, NSAR and Medway Council made [Emily’s] transition an easy process.”
“The support given by NSAR has been amazing and the whole journey has been a fantastic experience.”