Diversifying your Apprenticeship Recruitment


A new report from the Sutton Trust looks at how young people are accessing apprenticeships, and the outreach employers are undertaking to encourage more young people to take them up.


Through interviewing a variety of employers, universities, and outreach delivery organisations, the report investigated the ways in which employers can target and improve their workforce through apprenticeships.


As found in previous reports, access to the best apprenticeships for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds continues to be an issue. An increasing number of degree apprenticeships are going to older apprentices, and they are also more likely to be taken up by those in more affluent areas.


Polling 857 apprentices, the latest report states:

  • A quarter of young apprentices found the apprenticeships application process difficult to navigate, with those from working-class backgrounds more likely to report this.

  • 14% of respondents said they didn’t receive any information or outreach before starting their apprenticeship.

  • 31% of the young apprenticeships surveyed said better information and support from their school would have encouraged their friends, peers and-or classmates to choose an apprenticeship.

  • 68% of apprentices aged 25-54 reported they were already working for their employer before they started their apprenticeship, meaning young people from lower socio-economic backgrounds are losing out.

How can System Group support your inclusive recruitment?


As one of the leading providers of logistics apprenticeships throughout the UK, we work particularly hard to ensure this sector is diversified for future generations. With less than 20% of the logistics workforce being female, we actively increase publicity and targeted outreach to education providers and careers services to increase recognition and awareness of apprenticeships as a valid route into employment for people of all backgrounds.


Our apprenticeship recruitment service ensures that funding is skewed towards programmes with the highest return on investment in high value-adding sectors or in skill-shortage areas, and we work with employers to take on apprentices that will close the skills gap.


We encourage employers to look at how they can make the apprenticeship experience, and recruitment phase, as manageable as possible for disadvantaged learners. Working closely with Government agencies throughout the country, we recruit with added consideration to the likes of working parents and childcare responsibilities, supporting learners from poorer backgrounds with travel costs or being mindful that not everyone has a quiet place to work at home (or reliable internet access) when working remotely.


There are a number of reports which provide helpful information on increasing diversity and widening participation in the apprenticeship recruitment process, including Government guidance on creating an inclusive apprenticeship offer and apprenticeships and social mobility, to help you better understand the apprenticeship landscape and barriers to success.


You can download the full report from The Sutton Trust here. If you have any questions about Apprenticeship recruitment or how to get the best out of your Apprenticeship funding, get in touch.

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