The Palletways UK apprenticeship scheme hit a five-year milestone in November. Since the programme began in Winter 2012, some 17 apprentices have entered the scheme with 11 moving to a permanent contract upon completion. 3 apprentices are currently being trained.
When apprentices join, they receive comprehensive training and support so that young people have the chance to launch their career at Europe's number one palletised freight network. The apprenticeships cover a range of Palletways departments including Information Technology, Business Administration, Forklift Truck Driving and Customer Services.
Dave Walmsley, Palletways UK Managing Director, said: "Palletways has well and truly got behind apprenticeships. People are the foundation of our success as a market leader, so investing in the next generation of highly motivated staff who will take our business forwards to even greater heights is essential.
"Our apprentice retention rate is 79 percent, well above the national average of 67 percent. We're also proactive in offering apprentices permanent contracts. Everyone at Palletways is proud of our five-year support of apprentices and look forward to recruiting even more young people over the next five years."
The apprentice who is now a full-time employee – Aaron Cooke
One of the longest serving former apprentices who transferred to a permanent contract is Aaron Cooke who joined in April 2013 as a forklift truck driver at the company's base is Fradley. He transferred to a permanent contract in June 2015.
He said: "I felt that I could learn so many new skills as a driver and develop as a person to create a new career for myself at Palletways. I chose to be a forklift driver based on the skills I already had and career interests I wanted to develop. Before entering the scheme, I had no qualifications. But thanks to Palletways, I now have a Class 1 NVQ in Forklift Operations and I'm a qualified first aider.
"The support and knowledge that the staff have provided to support your apprenticeship is first-class. Everyone in my team had accountability for my progress. Another important part of being an apprentice that people don't appreciate is absorbing the company's culture and continuing the legacy of those who have built-up the company before us."
The new apprentice – Juliet Cox
The most recently appointed apprentice is Juliet Cox who joined as a Customer Services Assistant in July 2017. She joined for a change of career path and to improve her range of qualifications.
She said: "I've really enjoyed my time so far with Palletways. Until now, I'd had no experience in an office, but wanted to challenge myself to learn new skills and be part of a team. What I like is always being busy, yet still having the opportunity to approach my manager and co-workers for help, guidance and support. My apprenticeship tutor completes a brilliant all-round package of support to promote my development.
"I hope that I can continue my career at Palletways once my apprenticeship is complete and with the right application move onwards and upwards in a company which is a terrific place to work."
Anyone interested in applying for an apprenticeship at Palletways can forward their CV and a cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org