Housing provider doing its bit for youth employment

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The district’s largest social housing provider is leading the way on youth unemployment with one tenth of its staff working as apprentices.

Working with Moulton College in Northampton, South Northants Homes has a successful apprenticeship programme which has been running since 2009.

Since then, the company has recruited 11 apprentices, and supported the recruitment of a further four. Apprentices have worked on tasks including home maintenance, customer services and grounds maintenance.

Ten per cent of the company’s workforce is made up of apprentices, and nine currently work for them.

A big part of its success is down to the development of five apprenticeship work trials, giving applicants valuable experience which the can they can talk about during interviews, whether they were successful in the scheme or not.

Becky Pavey, community development manager for SNH, said supporting apprenticeships was an important part of the business.

She said: “I think we get loads out of it . Our customers have said they wanted us to take on local people and employ younger people, so straight away we have achieved what they want.

“We see them as the future workforce of the organisation. It gives us a younger point of view on things and a more diverse workforce. It’s great that our contractors are very supportive of this as well.

“We don’t see them as cheap labour. We pay more than the minimum wage and we really want to invest in them. ”

For information on apprenticeship programmes call the college on 01604 491131 or e-mail apprenticeships@moulton.ac.uk.