If you’re finishing up with your schooling or considering a career change, you will be looking at what’s next. For many people, university is not an attractive option – but an apprenticeship might be exactly what they are looking for to move forward in their life.
An apprenticeship offers a combination of practical training and education combined with traditional study. When you undergo an apprenticeship, you have the opportunity to work with experts in your industry and gain the kind of technical training you need to move forward as a professional, while at the same time getting paid.
While this all sounds great, it’s important to consider what type of apprenticeship will work for you. After all, there’s a range of levels of apprenticeships, from certificates through to diplomas and advanced diplomas.
When choosing an apprenticeship, you will have a lot of options available to you, and if you’re not 100% set on the type of trade or professional qualification you’re after, it can be hard to choose. You may have to start off doing all the hard jobs, cleaning up junk or sweeping but it leads to a great career with stable employment and a great salary in most situations.
At ATQ, we’re in the business of training apprentices and matching apprentices with willing employers. Read on to find out about how to choose an apprenticeship that will lead to a long term career you’ll enjoy.
Choosing an Apprenticeship
As we mentioned above, there’s a range of qualifications available to you as an apprentice – whether you’re looking for a Certificate II or III, or if you are hoping to be a master builder. The type of apprenticeship you choose will depend on:
- The level of skill training you’re after
- The sector you want to work in – whether this is construction, automotive, electrical, plumbing, hospitality, hairdressing, engineering, or something else entirely!
- What your career path is like and how long you want to spend as an apprentice
- What type of career progression options are available to you
Once you have identified some of these key issues, you will need to think about what type of industry you want to be an apprentice in. After all, there are so many options available to you, and it’s important to get it right!
Choosing an industry for your apprenticeship
When trying to narrow down the type of apprenticeship you want to do, it can be helpful to think about the types of skills and abilities you have, and what you enjoy doing. If you have no idea about what you love or what you are good at, it can be helpful to take an online placement test.
This kind of test can give you some direction in what types of industries you might enjoy working in – and may offer you the guidance you need. Think about:
- Whether you like working outside
- If you have good attention to detail or if you’re more of a ‘big picture’ type person
- What kind of tasks absorb your attention
- If you like working as part of a team or on your own
- If you take direction well or if you like to learn on your own
- How much variation you like in your working week
- Whether you like working on practical tasks or if you like written tasks
- If you like working with tools and machinery
These kinds of questions can help you narrow down what types of industries you might be better suited in. You don’t have to do a trade-based apprenticeship as well; there are plenty of apprenticeship options available in aged care and hospitality as well as traditional trades like building and plumbing.
Consider the benefits of becoming an apprentice
While you’re thinking about the type of apprenticeship you want to do, it can be helpful to consider the overall benefit to you! You’re going to be undergoing training and getting paid while you learn.
Compare this to your mates doing university who are learning without any (or with limited) practical training, but will be in large amounts of debt for the privilege!
- You are learning as you earn and don’t have the high costs associated with your traditional forms of education.
- You are networking and developing relationships with key professionals in your industry.
- You have great career prospects and will have a job as you study – and potentially immediately after you qualify.
Key skills you need to have as an apprentice
When looking to hire a new apprentice, an employer is going to be looking at the following skills. Making sure you show these skills off is key to getting a great apprenticeship and making a career you’ll love.
- Work ethic and enthusiasm for the job
- Communication skills
- Technical skills (or a willingness to learn)
- A can-do attitude
We hope this has been helpful in setting you on a path to finding an apprenticeship you’ll love.