Stagecoach has beaten its own record for the number of apprentices employed, which will reach over 1,000 in 2022 compared to 800 last year
Stagecoach marked National Apprentice Week 2022, which ran from 7 to 11 February, by reaching the milestone of having its highest ever number of apprentices currently employed. The company currently has over 1,000 apprentices being trained in a variety of roles, from driving and engineering to human resources and learning & development apprentice qualifications. This is the most the group has had at any one time, beating last year’s figure of 800, with the apprentices coming to the firm from a range of diverse backgrounds and have a mix of ages.
Stagecoach believes it was also the first public transport organisation to offer a driver apprenticeship scheme as well as an engineering apprenticeship programme. It offers a ‘trade-up’ scheme, giving existing employees the opportunity to undertake an apprenticeship with the
Amber King started in September 2021 at Gloucester depot on the ‘trade-up’ scheme. She spent four years as a bus driver but wanted to move into engineering. Amber said: “I have really enjoyed everything so far, I started the apprenticeship with a keen interest but very little mechanical knowledge.
“I feel like I have learnt so much already and I really do get to learn something new every day. I am now able to carrying out servicing tasks and minor repairs without help, and I’m really looking forward to gaining more knowledge and being able to confidently do more. It’s great to see buses you’ve worked on out on the road.”
Martin Griffiths, Stagecoach Chief Executive said: “Apprenticeships are critical to our future workforce and an area that Stagecoach has invested in for many years.
“As we mark National Apprenticeship Week, it’s vital that we all play our part in helping the country to re-build and help people to kick start their careers and our apprenticeship programmes offer something for everyone. Those who are joining the world of work and looking to start their careers, providing opportunities for people internally such as Amber to progress into a new area, and offering others the chance to change their career and learn new skills regardless of their background or experience.
“Apprenticeships bring huge value to our business in terms of talent and diversity. We have been at the forefront of championing apprentices in our workforce for many years and it is great that we now have over 1,000 apprentices across our companies in England, Scotland and Wales. As well as ensuring that our workforce represents the communities we serve, apprenticeships provide opportunities for internal development and succession planning.”
In November 2021, Stagecoach was awarded Silver membership with the 5% Club for the number of employees in ‘earn and learn’ positions. The 5% Club is a UK-wide charity that aims to contribute to the alleviation of poverty through increased levels of employment. It works with UK employers to inspire, educate and retain a growing body of people into ‘earn and learn’ placements to increase the number of apprenticeships, sponsored students and graduate trainees.
The number of employees in Stagecoach currently undergoing apprenticeships placed the firm in the top 5% of the organisations participating in last year’s Employer Audit. The company was the only transport operator to be awarded silver membership in 2021.
Its commitment to training and development was highlighted further in the firm’s recently launched Sustainability Strategy which includes an objective of having 40% of leadership roles fulfilled by women by 2026 and 25% of its workforce from ethnic minorities. Stagecoach’s commitment also includes offering more work placements for 16-24 year olds.