In August 2020, Gary from DA Training was able to share the good news about employer incentives, which has really seen an increase in apprenticeship starts (especially across smaller businesses) over the last few months.
He now has some updates for us on how DA training and other small businesses have changed their business approach with apprenticeships. Please read on for Gary’s update…
Deadline approaching at the end of May 2021
First of all, a quick reminder for those businesses that took on a new apprentice between 1st August 2020 on 31st March 2021, that the grant claim needs to be made through the employer portal by 31st May 2021. For apprentices who joined after the 1st of April 2021, you can start making your claim from the 1st of June 2021. If you are unsure as to whether you qualified for these, please speak to your training provider.
Changing our business approach – with an apprentice!
At DA Training, we’ve recently changed our business approach, and this has helped support many other businesses nationwide and this change could support your business too.
As we moved out of the lockdown just before Christmas, we realised that our business was going to struggle unless we changed how we did things. We relied on going out and meeting people face to face offering advice and guidance on how apprenticeships could add value to their business. As this wasn’t really possible at the time, we had to come up with a way that we could showcase what we do and how we did it and the effect it had on the businesses we worked with.
After racking our brains and speaking with some other businesses that were facing a similar challenge, we looked at our business from the outside in. We wanted to see how potential customers saw us as a business, so we conducted some research into our customer facing channels and found that we were “okay” in most areas. However, other businesses don’t want to work with “okay” companies, they want to work with innovative companies that will support them and help them grow.
This was when we decided that content (to coin a phrase) is king, and by generating interesting content we could reach our current customers, potential new apprentices and generate new business from this. We set about redesigning our marketing strategy and started to work on creating new content to share with these people and businesses. It was off the back of this and speaking to some existing customers that they also felt they could refresh their content and use this method. This was how we then decided to launch the Junior Content Producer Apprenticeship.
The Junior Content Producer Apprenticeship
We trialled it initially ourselves and the engagement we got from external organisations was amazing. Having someone dedicated to producing engaging content has increased our occupancy by over 25% and given us an increase in turnover of over £75,000 between January and April alone.
We have even adapted our programmes and developed new curriculums to support businesses, and it was when we started to be contacted by businesses on a national scale, we knew we had found something that we could use to help small businesses grow their customer base and hopefully increase sales too.
We are now working all over the country with this programme and so far, the customers we are working with have seen tremendous increases in their online traffic and are so pleased they started this journey with us!
We have now even managed to deliver this programme into large corporate companies that wish to develop learning management platforms, e–Learning suites and also work on website design and builds. I honestly feel that content production can feature and be an asset in any business and that this is a way that most businesses can attract new customers or even re engage with past or present customers.
There isn’t a better time (in my opinion) for businesses to look at this as an option for them. There is up to £4,000 available currently for taking on a new apprentice. The benefit of this apprenticeship is that it’s delivered wholly online, and that you don’t need to send your apprentice to college for day release, so they can be working with you on a full-time basis. They do still need spend 20% of their working week on off the job learning (as do all other apprenticeships) but this is made up of attending workshops (virtually), completing assignments, and also getting to know your business.
I would encourage every business to look at this as an opportunity, as we did as I really feel this could be the solution to help businesses move forward post-lockdown.
I’m always happy to arrange a conversation with no obligation where I can explain the benefits in more detail and also give you a better understanding as to how this solution could help your business.
Please do contact me on 02380 016555 or at [email protected]
We will also be running a webinar next Friday 4th June on the subject, you can find out more and book on here.
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