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Author Topic: Taking on an apprentice in 2014  (Read 2362 times)

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Offline Rodza1

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Taking on an apprentice in 2014
« on: July 19, 2014, 10:51:11 AM »
Hi All,

Looking at taking on an apprentice, things have changed a lot, even since I did my training in the early-mid 2000's.
Mainly price and time spent on block courses, extra safety training are the changes I'm aware of, aswell as more corrospondance
than there use to be.

Have been looking at a few of the apprenticeship schemes out there but was interested to hear thought/feedback from others.

Iv'e been approached by the Apprenticeship Training Trust a couple of times to catch up, but they have no young guys in my area in their system, so i found my own.

Has anyone signed their young person up with the ATT? And if so how did it go? From what ive read it seems like a reasonably good pathway for the trainee.

Are there apprenticeship schemes out there that should be avoided because they may be more beneficial to the scheme providers?
Ive heard a few things about some of them over the years.

Any advice about others experiences would be gladly taken on board. I didnt have the best apprenticeship experience, but i made it through. My opinion is that new trainees to the industry are like fishfood. Iv'e seen more than a few guys get trampled by their employer or training scheme and I would like to try an give my guy a honest fighting chance to succeed. cheers  :)

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Offline Jaxcat

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Re: Taking on an apprentice in 2014
« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2014, 10:16:16 PM »
Firstly you need to have a think about how much control you want of the apprentice - the schemes are the employers and then you are a host.  You don't have to worry about holiday pay or time at block course if you go through Masterlink, or if they are sick, - the additional money you pay over and above what the apprentice gets paid covers this.  Not 100% sure how ATT do it.  What polytech do you want your apprentice to attend? 

Do you want to employ them directly?  If so then you need to decide if you are going to contribute to the fees, or make them pay the fees on the way through and perhaps re-imburse them a % of it if they stay with you for a set period at the successful conclusion of their apprenticeship.  Be prepared to have unbillable hours - you need to keep the apprentice with you for proper training for at least the first year (in the eyesight and ear shot of) - but we keep our apprentices with tradesman for most of their entire apprenticeship.  I appreciate with a smaller firm or as a one man band this is not always possible.  Apprentices are like gold - they need a firm hand in regards to laying out your expectations and keeping them on the path to fully qualifying, but you will also need to be prepared to act as a surrogate parent, friend and mentor.  It's a very rewarding thing to see a young man or woman become qualified and know that you got them to this stage.  Have a good contract, be fair and share your knowledge freely.  Be prepared for some ups and downs, the middle part of the apprenticeship can be the time when they go off the rails a bit, but they come right again.   If you get one, encourage them to live at home for as long as they can, this way they will at least eat properly and have washing done.  Good luck, look forward to hearing what you decide.
Have you learned lessons only of those who admired you, and were tender with you, and stood aside for you?  Have you not learned great lessons from those who braced themselves against you, and disputed the passage with you?  (Walt Whitman 1819-1891)  American Poet

Offline Wal

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Re: Taking on an apprentice in 2014
« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2014, 07:47:18 AM »
I feel it is really about what you can offer them and their commitment. The way the training system is at the moment they won't get taught any hands on skills what so ever by the institutions as it is all left up to you the employer so if there are aspects of the industry you don't do then you need to be prepared to get that training for them.

Their commitment has to be there. They need to be told it takes seven years to become fully qualified. Up until they reach certifying level their qualification is only any use if they are supervised.

Like Jaxcat said its very satisfying but the commitment and onus is on you as the employer to make the entire system work. I won't be taking on another apprentice until the qualifications and training are fit for purpose that is they train an apprentice to be FULLY qualified. It may not happen in my time.

Offline Rodza1

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Re: Taking on an apprentice in 2014
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2014, 07:28:56 PM »
Hi Jaxcat & Wal

Thanks for your feedback. Greatly received.

I have found a very practical young man who is really keen so I have decided to give him a go. I'm really committed to teaching young people what I know,i quite enjoy it although it can be a little frustrating at times i just think back to how i first was and smile.he will be my first full time apprentice directly under my control. Ive had other guys with me for a few months here and there before I started my own business but that was part of a larger company in the past.

I am of the opinion the training isnt up to scratch and where it should be so agree with you wal. I am more or less assuming responsibility for giving him the experiences and training he needs since the industy is not where it needs to be in regard to training.

As I am a small business I can put a reasonable amount of time into him personally. My workshop is large enough to have test benches and test appliances installed, plumbing fixtures etc. I want to make a small circuit of different things he can do while I sometimes do quotes or need to keep him busy if I do a quick admin task and the van is already clean etc.I plan on having him with me for the first few years as I want him to be trained as I supervision for at least two years and keeping with the compliance. I ended up getting about 3.5 years with tradesman before being launched into my own van and I have benefited greatly from it as a trades person.

I have already explained the costs involved and how long the journey actually is. Also about the costs of registration and dealing with the pgdb. seems ok about it.He has money saved up to pay the fees required which I was surprised at. Most young people today have nothing so i think that shows a respectable amount of commitment.

I feel i can offer him a good range of work. we do plumbing,gas,roofing and drainage. hes living at home, his parents are up to the task of helping him in that part if it means success as a trades person eventually. (looking at making a self contained flat/area within their farm home etc)

As I mentioned in my previous post I have been talking to a area manager from the ATT. They are a not for profit organisation that help apprentices and host employers that has been operating since 1991.

As far as I can gather so far from the conversations they act as employer and I am the host. They charge me $1 per hour as a fee on top of whatever I decide to pay my guy. They then invoice me every month etc.

Copied this from the ATT website

The Apprenticeship Training Trust is a not for profit charitable trust and any profits that ATT makes are used to support apprentices in undertaking apprenticeships throughout New Zealand. ATT was established in 1991 and has over 22 years of experience in mentoring and managing apprenticeships in the plumbing, gasfitting, drainlaying and roofing industry. ATT assigns an Area Manager to each apprentice to mentor and guide them individually through their apprenticeship while taking care of the admin and educational side of the apprenticeship so you can focus on working and developing your knowledge and skills. You can trust that you are in good hands with ATT.
Benefits of training as an apprentice with ATT:
Apprentices get access to a tool loan to help them purchase significantly discounted quality tools which they keep and move onto their careers with.
ATT apprentices receive a .58c per hour tool account which is paid on top of their wages and can be used for tools and equipment.
ATT has well established industry relationships nationwide and has great opportunities with quality employers for apprentices.
ATT provides each apprentice with comprehensive PPE gear (safety equipment).
ATT will pay for the apprentice’s Site Safe Passport and First Aid course. ATT also pays the apprentice wages while on required OSH courses, with the exception of first aid.
ATT pays the apprentice’s wages while on block course.
ATT will pay your wages while you are on sick leave, annual leave and statutory holidays. ATT also pays the apprentices ACC and Kiwisaver in accordance with New Zealand law.
Upon completion of your apprenticeship you will be invited to ATT’s annual Graduation Ceremony where you could be awarded a share of $20,000 p/a in awards donated by our industry sponsors.
ATT can assist you with mediation and give advice with difficult situations that can arise from time to time between you and your host employer.
If your host employer’s work slows or you are handed back for reasons that are not conduct related, ATT will endeavour to place you with another host employer through our nationwide network, so you can continue on with your apprenticeship.
ATT designates a personal mentor to assist you with queries and guide you through any difficulties that may arise during your apprenticeship. We also organise new tools, safety gear, your safety courses and provide guidance as to what upcoming learning requirements may be on the horizon. Your mentor will also provide you with unbiased advice on different matters. Your mentor will physically visit you every three months and provide you with written reports on your progress. They are always just a phone call away.

Sounds like a good deal for the apprentice, and also for the employer. I cant see how it could get much better than that for the cost that has been indicated. He will receive a lot of help which is what young trades people to be need, and I would also have support which i would appreciate.

Offline Jaxcat

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Re: Taking on an apprentice in 2014
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2014, 08:25:58 PM »
Good on you and he sounds like a lovely young man - and lucky to get a good tradesman like yourself willing to take him on.  There is a re-boot payment available to him and you if you employ him direct $2000 each payable into each of your bank accounts after 90 working days.  If he goes under ATT they will get the payment for the employer and he will get the apprentice payment.   I was at a Federation meeting last night and talking to an employer and apprentice and one of the things they spoke about was not knowing too many other apprentices in the area - it's always good if you can find out who else has apprentices so that they can occasionally get together and study etc or get ready for block courses.

If you ever get stuck with any employment issues I'd be happy to assist.  A good thing to do when you your fella is at block course is to drop into the tech during class time, meet the tutors and see what they do.  They will appreciate the interest from an employer, you'll know the tutors if you need to contact them, and your apprentice will know that you care and want to know what he's up to.

All positive - good luck!

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