We do a lot of work to make sure that our apprenticeships reach people from diverse backgrounds. We have created a content hub on our careers site so that applicants understand the opportunities on offer, the support available in the programme, and how to apply for an apprenticeship with us. We asked our current apprentices to feature in the content, so it’s relatable and helps break down some of the misconceptions and barriers that candidates may have. We promote all our apprenticeship roles via several recruitment platforms.
As a proud employer of apprentices, we are responsible for promoting the many fantastic opportunities apprenticeships offer. We do this through educational outreach activities and aim to break the cycle of insight by only reaching students/schools with contacts within the industry. The community of digital role models that we created from Auto Trader helps us on those trips! We work with partners who look to reach students in social mobility cold spot areas or from lower socio-economic backgrounds and recognise the impact of ‘four meaningful careers encounters’* on a student, where the encounters are planned, relevant to students, reflected upon and improved.
Our content includes career talks, workshops and market insights to support Gatsby Benchmarks** and empower students through interactive experiences to feel confident to complete tasks they would do in the role. Our hope is that our outreach will inspire students to consider a career in tech, whether via an apprenticeship programme or as a graduate.
It’s not just outreach we focus on. Several steps are also taken to support candidates as they move through an assessment process. Regular communication with the resourcing team, detailed assessment guides, and support with travel costs for onsite interviews. If required, we supply technology for candidates and ensure that every applicant has the tools they need to prepare for the assessment.
We’ve only just started to track data on socio-economic background right at the application stage to understand who is applying to work for us. Early insights indicate that we are reaching a broader community of incredible people from all backgrounds.
The sheer amount of enthusiasm and recognition we receive from across the business about what an apprentice can bring is incredibly satisfying. We’re optimistic that opportunities will continue to be created across the company to offer more people a career in digital.