To mark National Apprenticeship Week (4th March), Lisa Bray, Director of Eden Fyfe Accounts says apprenticeships are not just for tradespeople. Lisa, who is also a Board member of Developing Young Workforce in Fife, is keen to challenge this outdated notion about apprenticeships.
Lisa's firm has just employed Jake Brown, 18, from Levenmouth as a Trainee Accounts Assistant - proof that a Modern Apprenticeship can be the gateway to a professional career. Jake joined Eden Fyfe Accounts just three months ago and is now working towards his AAT qualification for Modern Apprenticeship in Accounting. While Jake is tackling book-keeping and assisting with VAT returns, Eden Fyfe provides him with study support alongside his practical experience.
“As a Board member of Developing Young Workforce, I was keen to find a way to support an apprentice in our own business. It shows that this is a good route for young people to get into all kinds of employment and career paths. Apprenticeships also bring good value to businesses as well as it is a way to cultivate new talent. Careers like accountancy and other professional services have more than one access route and that opens up more opportunities for many young people.
“Working in an office while studying also develops other important skills like time management and communications. Over the years we have often been an all-female company, but Jake seems to be handling it in his stride and we are enjoying having a male perspective in the office!”
“I'm really enjoying the opportunities here. I'm working in a great place and delighted to be on a good career ladder which will ultimately lead to a formal accountancy qualification. I did study accountancy and business at school but didn't consider a Modern Apprenticeship at first. After studying Quantity Surveying at college for a few months I realised that I would prefer to be working and learning at the same time.”
There are over 650 Modern Apprentices in Fife between the ages of 16 and 24 and 171 aged over 25. This represents just over 6% of the total across Scotland.
“There are many more opportunities for young people now to find a career they are interested in and I would love to see more businesses taking on Modern Apprentices to open doors to training and progress and for businesses to benefit from enthusiastic and energetic new talent.”