We speak to apprentices at Highfield this National Apprenticeship Week

We’re in the middle of National Apprenticeship week now, where countless events have already taken place and so many more are yet to come!

Apprenticeships have been provided by Highfield for years, leading to permanent colleagues and wonderful members of our team. This has also led us to become proud gold member of the 5% club as we continue to ensure opportunities are provided for everyone in a range of ways. Our additional benefits like 4-day work weeks and unlimited holiday, help to create an environment that supports the growth of our colleagues whilst maintaining a healthy work-life balance. This means apprenticeships can feel like less of a workload as more time can be dedicated to your studies without taking over either your work or personal life.

To mark this event, we spoke to two apprentices within Highfield to hear about how their experience has been. Sam and Hannah have both been working here for the last year whilst regularly attending college lessons and completing their coursework and exams alongside the day to day role in the office. Taking each responsibility in their stride, here’s what they had to say…

How have you found your apprenticeship?

My apprenticeship has been a very positive experience because it was a good way to put what I have learnt in the classroom to use in the real world. It has started my career in finance and provided me with practical skills in a job setting.

  • Sam

It’s been good to combine the general knowledge I had at the start with the more specific and in depth lessons, all while being able to apply these new skills into my day to day work. It has helped me to gain a much clearer understanding of marketing and developed my skillset over the last year that I’ve been a part of the apprenticeship.

  • Hannah

How have you found working at Highfield at the same time?

I have really enjoyed working at Highfield and I believe it is a great company to do an apprenticeship with as they offer great flexibility and support with college and exams etc. The 4-day week helped me massively as I could use that day to focus on college as well as having a good work/life balance. 

  • Sam

It’s made it much easier to put the things I learn into practice everyday and to have had the experience of my manager to help me learn even more. She has been great with giving me the time and space to complete my college work while providing so much support in helping me with the tasks and work set by it too.

  • Hannah

Why did you want to do an apprenticeship?

Personally, I had a choice between an apprenticeship or University, and I picked the right one for me. Learning and earning simultaneously was more appealing to me and I think some employers may value experience more.

  • Sam

I wanted to gain the experience of marketing whilst narrowing down my knowledge and expertise to fit the role of a content creator so I could specialize more within that position. I have a University degree for film production but the pandemic hit soon after I graduated so the creative industry had become uncertain and unpredictable, so I chose to focus on using my skills but in a more secure career direction.

  • Hannah

What would you change about your experience?

I can’t think of anything I would change about my experience.

  • Sam

Nothing I would really change. It’s been great with Highfield.

  • Hannah

Would you recommend apprenticeships to people?

Yes, I do recommend people to do apprenticeships, it’s a great way to get your foot in the door and start a career in something you are passionate about.

  • Sam

Apprenticeships are a much more practical and hands on way of learning which can be far more enjoyable for many people, as well as giving the opportunity to be paid whilst you learn so there doesn’t have to be a choice between education and earning money. I feel that apprenticeships can sometimes be overlooked or people think it’s only for certain industries or jobs, but there really is a wide range of options. It can help to add qualifications and experience to your CV, making it easier to excel in a career you enjoy and give you the chance to experience the job to make sure it is something you want to do.

  • Hannah

What advice would you give to someone thinking of doing one?

Go for it 100%, unless you need a degree for what you want to do, I would suggest looking at apprenticeships and start gaining experience as soon as you can.

  • Sam

Look into what work you would enjoy and see what the qualification is at the end of the apprenticeship. Also, make sure it’s a good company to work for, otherwise you risk not enjoying your time or not feeling like you’re getting enough out of it and hesitate to pursue your career any further. It’s a great option especially if you’re unsure about going to uni. You can gain a lot of connections and experience which might normally be missed by going to university.

  • Hannah

The chance to earn and learn gives many people a doorway into a career that may not have been possible otherwise, so no matter your background, if you have a determination to succeed, the discipline to achieve, and the drive to grow, then we have some excellent opportunities for you! Speak to our talent acquisition Annie here, or head to our website to see what vacancies we have.

10 Interview tips

When looking for a new job, it is important to present yourself on paper and in person, the best way that you can. To help you out, we’ve created a helpful list of tips and tricks for your interviews that are commonly made mistakes. It can be easy to get flustered when the nerves kick in, but if you remind yourself of these basic rules, and prepare as much as you can before the interview, then it should be your most successful interview yet!

Remember, the best way to get better at something is to practice, so don’t worry too much if you haven’t had much experience being interviewed before. Do some mock interviews with friends or family and be kind to yourself. The first attempt might not be the smoothest, but it’ll get easier from there.

Highfield is a trusted recruitment agency, so we have all the inside knowledge on what employers are looking for and what not to do!


Be aware of your background in a video interview to avoid distractions or anything that draws the interviewer’s eye away from you. Your environment needs to have good signal or Wi-Fi and if you’re on a telephone call then try it standing up as your energy levels will rise which is reflected in your voice.

2. Test

Before the day of the interview try out the video platform you’re using or make sure your phone has a strong signal and clear microphone. Using a friend or family member for a mock test interview will help you learn the platform, ask for feedback on how clear the audio is and answers to the mock questions.

3. Time

Set yourself up early for any interview so you can be ready as soon as it starts. There may not be a second chance if you miss the phone or video call. If you have a face to face interview, be sure to travel to the location before the day so you know how to get there, how long it takes, and where to park or walk from.

4. Prepare

Make sure you have notes with any questions you wanted to ask or reminders on what to bring up as responses. Same as the next tip though, don’t let these distract you. A conversation should feel natural so let things flow and use the prompts occasionally. This will also mean you aren’t looking down too often and can instead maintain eye contact in a video interview.

5. Don’t get distracted

Turn off background noises like TV’s or music and clear anything distracting from around your computer, or in the room so as to maintain your full attention. If you’re at a location for a face-to-face interview, try not to look around at the environment too much. There might be a lot going on around you so stay focused on the conversation.

6. Be professional

Before a video interview, check your account is not an old one with an unprofessional name. Body language is key, so sit up straight and look at the camera to make eye contact. If it’s a phone call then use your voice to express personality (don’t come across as too robotic as they can’t see what your body language is saying, so you have to rely on your voice) and speak slowly and clearly. You can take your time with what you say as it will show you can remain in control and calm under pressure.

7. Communication

Face to face allows you to communicate in more ways than any other interview. Speak clearly and try not to go off on tangents. Sit up straight and be sure to listen just as much as you talk. They are there to hear about you, but avoid interruptions or talking over anyone and listen carefully to what they say. It’ll be a key interaction with people you could be working alongside, so be authentic as it’s important to know how your personality fits into the role and company.

8. Use real-world examples

You can almost guarantee that you’ll be given some situation-based questions so have some experiences to hand that you can talk about. Any examples of stressful situations you’ve dealt with or successful ideas that have helped the business will go a long way in showing your abilities.

9. Salary

Don’t be afraid of the salary question. If it isn’t mentioned before, research the industry average and be ready with a figure you want to achieve. They may ask what you earned in your previous role so make sure you have that on hand, and if you’re uncertain about asking, remember it is often an important determining factor of looking for work; and therefore information you should be clear on.

10. Follow up

At the end of an interview, ask for feedback and express your interest. Be sure to have shown you have enjoyed the sound of the role and tell the interviewer it was good to meet them and hear about the role.

It sounds like a lot of steps to follow but take your time and try not to rush. Making sure you do as many of these as possible will give you a better chance to be noticed by your interviewer and have you stand out from the crowd. If you want to speak to any of our experienced, trusted consultants for more help in finding a job, give us a call on 01489 774 010. We’re here ready to help you out.

5 steps to a great CV

Before you even make it to the interview, you have to make sure you show all the right things on your CV first. But what are the right things? We’re a trusted recruitment agency with many years in the industry, and we have the top 5 steps to get your resumé right!


Think about your skills, competencies, qualifications and experience. What are your unique selling points and strengths? Consider what you have achieved in your previous roles and keep them relevant to the new role you are applying for.

If you are replying to a specific job advertisement, review what key words and tasks were used in the advertisement. Which of these words applies to you?

2. Helpful Hints

A short and powerful CV will catch the attention of any recruiter and employer, but we understand it can be hard to narrow down a career’s worth of achievements to one page. So, if you’ve got a lot of matching skills or experiences then make sure your CV is no longer than 3 pages.

All content MUST be relevant to the job you’re applying for. This is the most important tip and is still often forgotten.

Make sure your CV is well structured and laid out, reflecting the logical manner in which you work and making it easier to read.

Avoid self-opinion. Include factual information or objective evidence which show the direct impact or results of your achievements.

Pay close attention to details in advertisements, like how to spell the contact’s name or any specific instructions on how to reply. Have someone else to double check your spelling and grammar.

Always avoid fancy fonts. Clear, neat text will have a significantly higher chance to be read by an employer or recruiter and keeps the document tidy and easy to understand.

3. The First Page

This should contain your:

– personal details

– home address

– contact details

at the top of the page.

Following this is a brief summary of educational credentials and qualifications.

Then an overview statement which covers your strengths in the relevant area, skills and experience, and the type of position sought.

4. Pages Two/Three

Highlight your employment history in reverse chronological order so that the latest job you have had is first on the list. If you’ve worked for one company, break it down with an entry for each position or project you have dealt with.

Briefly describe the responsibilities and work you’ve undertaken within each of those positions.

Include achievements, not just regular tasks, and where possible, explain them in sales, financial, or production terms.

List any relevant hobbies and interests in no more than three lines, so long as they relate to the position or industry you are applying for.

Any volunteering, charity work, or external posts are worth mentioning and always include any languages, courses, or training you have done.

Two referees are recommended to be given at a later date.

5. The Covering Letter

CV’s should always be introduced with a cover letter or telephone call.

Use this to expand on points from your CV or include new ones if there was not enough space.

It is not a purely opinion based piece, continue to stick to facts and evidence, but now you can have a bit more space to express more of who you are through that information.

The letter can really let your personality come through. Remember, recruitment consultants and employers read hundreds of CVs, an interesting introductory letter can make yours stand out!

For any more help on pursuing and developing your career, our friendly and trusted recruiters are ready to give you all the support and guidance you need. Call us on 01489 774 010 or visit our website to contact our team.

The Challenges faced during a job search: Understanding the potential company

Job searching can be difficult at the best of times but to make it even harder, it can sometimes be confusing when trying to understand exactly what the new company has to offer. They might have a flashy website or a busy social media, but what do they really do? In our recent poll on Linkedin you told us that while looking for a new role, one of the challenges our candidates struggle with most is understanding the new company they are applying to.  

When you’re looking for your next role, the process is often daunting and difficult. Everything down to updating your CV, writing cover letters, and sending out more emails than you care to admit. However, once you’ve managed to find that job advert which appears to describe the perfect role, now comes the time to figure out if the company shares the same values as you. 

|| “The website might be outdated or confusing” 

Sometimes, the company has very little information about itself online. The website might be outdated or confusing and any reviews of the business are unhelpful or rare. A great place to explore is social media. More and more companies are expanding their presence on platforms such as LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter etc, which makes it far easier for you to learn more about what they do and what the working environment is like.  

|| “figure out if it’s a place that fits your needs” 

Social media allows for business to show off what they do, who their team are, and make them more available to contact. All of this provides more in depth understanding and behind the scenes knowledge about how the company runs so you can begin to figure out if it’s a place that fits your needs. In any case, it will hopefully help you to gauge what the people are like who work there and engage with the business, giving you a clearer idea of how the work environment and culture are represented. 

|| “our consultants at Highfield do the leg work for you” 

Even though it is free to have social media pages and incredibly easy to set them up, some companies still lack an online presence. There is only so much research you can do, and by now you’ve probably already had to search through a vast number of potential employers. To take away all of these steps and give you more time and energy to spend elsewhere, our consultants at Highfield do the leg work for you. With their expertise and connections within the industries they specialise in, any questions you have about an employer and their company can be answered by our team.  

|| “They will take care of you through every step of the process” 

You no longer have to spend hours sifting through either too much or too little information and instead allow your consultant to match you with the right job and tell you all you need to know in a simple phone call or email. They will take care of you through every step of the process and check in even after you’ve successfully got a new job so they can make sure you’re settled and happy. We’re always open to candidates looking for new roles so whenever you’re ready to start down a new path or progress further along the industry you’re in, our team will be there to guide you to the next stage of your career. 

|| “We have the skills and resources to provide you with all the information and opportunities you need” 

Make the stress of job searching and understanding the new company far easier by letting our team handle it for you. We have the skills and resources to provide you with all the information and opportunities you need, including an in depth understanding of our clients and their requirements for your new role. This can allow you to be as prepared as possible for interviews and help guide you to the dream job without having to figure it all out alone. 

In just one phone call, your whole career path could change. Call our consultants now on 01489774010 and kickstart the process towards enticing, new opportunities. We’re excited to hear from you and waiting to lead you to a role perfect for your skills and aspirations. 

What are the requirements to work at Hinkley Point C

Hinkley Point C has promised to create 25,000 jobs and the aspiration to create 1000 apprenticeship positions. These opportunities will include construction, piping engineers, commercial manager, ECI&I engineers, estimators, mechanical engineers, support roles, and others over the coming years.

Although there are 5 phases to Hinkley Point C, the 10-year project has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic and will be taking longer than first predicted. Now due to open in June 2026 instead of the planned 2025 – the end result will be providing opportunities for local, national, and international businesses. Many communities throughout the South West will also see ongoing benefits to their economy.  

Qualifications and experience can be a minefield when working out exactly what employers will look for, especially on a large-scale project such as Hinkley Point C. The requirements will depend on which phase of construction it is in. After approval from the British Government in September 2016, work has long since started on site, with the need for civil and structural engineers, project managers, and document controllers among the list of roles still being recruited. So, to help you figure out the minefield of employer needs, we’ve outlined the key information that should help you with your application…  


Employers for Hinkley are looking for candidates with a background in nuclear, or a professional who comes from a major infrastructure background. Quality assurance engineers and managers, planners, and quantity surveyors are amongst the 400+ job types available with the project. Depending on the role that you’re applying for, specific experience and requirements will obviously vary, but this industry experience is required by all contractors.  


Clearly, you must be competent in your job role and have the right attitude, resilience, and the desire to work as part of a team or in a leadership role. This will be assessed via checks of your CSCS card, and CCNSG Passport.  

Hinkley Point C recommends that you attend Bridgewater College for your CCNSG safety passport. They are an approved training provider whose tutors have all the relevant industry experience that you will need. To obtain a CCNSG Safety Passport, you will need to complete a two-day training course and pass a final test.  

Security clearance  

Most workers on the Hinkley Point C project require a security clearance, so there are minimum standards you must meet. Therefore, aspects such as your criminal record, financial past, family links, and references will be thoroughly checked in order for you to gain clearance. Without this clearance, for many roles, you will not be granted access to the site.   

Currently, in the second phase of construction, preparation for the third phase will be underway. Within that, specialised skills such as mechanical and electrical engineers will be required as they look for highly experienced workers to control and lead this next stage of Hinkley Point C. This new power plant uses 17% less uranium compared to older technology, meaning you’ll be a part of a more efficient and innovative future. It is also the first nuclear new build in the UK for 30 years. The project seeks candidates with new, fresh ideas due to the skills gap left because of an aging workforce and skills that have not been required for several decades. 

Highfield is a trusted recruitment supplier to the Hinkley Point C project. Further develop your skills and expertise with this opportunity and get involved in the construction of a power plant that will be producing 7% of Britain’s energy. If you are interested in working on the project, head over to our dedicated Hinkley Point C page and take a look at the latest available jobs.   

Alternatively, if you would like a confidential chat with one of our expert nuclear consultants, give us a call on 01489 774 010 today.  

IWD 2021, the women of Highfield talk career advice

International Women’s day is prominent for many people all over the world as it continues leading the pursuit of equality and celebrating the achievements of women everywhere. The battle to be seen and heard varies for women and it’s important that no matter who we are, we all help to call out inequality. This is why the theme for the day this year is #ChooseToChallenge in order to encourage everyone to challenge gender bias and lead to changes. ‘A challenged world is an alert world’ and we are each responsible to create an environment where equality is the norm. This begins with ensuring negative actions and behaviours are not overlooked, but are brought into the spotlight to be challenged and in turn work out a better and fairer solution. 

With many people willing to learn, it is easier to bring more awareness to inequality and help to further understand its consequences. Often, it may not be a deliberate attempt to create a gender gap, and so choosing to challenge these moments allows for it to be noticed and action taken. This provides a chance for equal opportunities to be presented to women, particularly in the workplace. We asked the women here at Highfield if they could share the best career advice they’ve received or learnt through their own experiences.  

“So, there are two things for me; 1. This was written on a little piece of paper and placed on my desk by a strong HR woman that I really respected whilst I was working in a large people business. It said “Tough times don’t last, tough people do” – aka get more resilient and know your self-worth. Whatever career path or choice you take – emotional resilience needs to be worked on and it’s an ongoing learning journey! Second is something I feel I have learnt along the way….; Having passion for what you do will never make work feel like work and it doesn’t matter what you do if you like the people you work with, the people matter.”

Kay Fadden, Performance and People Manager 

“My personal experience has been that out of mistakes and failures I have made throughout my career I have drawn on those experiences in future moments and turned failure in to success. The best lessons are learnt when we get it wrong.”

Zoe Lane, Manager 

“I’ve always told myself it’s all about mind set – believing you can achieve through dedication and hard work, as well as being lifelong learner. Never assume you are the cleverest person in the room.”

Zoe Towlson, Digital Marketing Executive 

“I think the main one is to embrace (and almost seek) failure, because you won’t always do everything right the first time, but embracing that notion means that you don’t fear trying new things. Everything is a learning process and we grow from our experiences – both the good ones and the bad ones – and those experiences are what ultimately make you better at your job. The quicker you figure out how not to do something, the quicker you find out how to do it perfectly. I think the saying goes “Fail early. Fail often. Fail forward.” 

Natasha, People Recruitment & Training Consultant 

• Keep pushing even when times are tough. 

• Never give up, tomorrows always a better day. 

• Stay true to your word, have the confidence to be who you are. 

Lizzie Stein, Recruitment Consultant  

“I would say that through my own experience I have learned that you can only do your best. Your work and career is effected by so many external factors that you cannot control everything. Work hard and to the best of your ability and you will be rewarded.”

Kirsty Lockyear, Principal Resourcing Consultant 

“Share knowledge. We all learn different things with different experiences and teaching can only help someone. I am forever asking questions from the people around me because it’s guaranteed that they know more than me about something, and on some days I will be the one teaching others. We’re not fighting against each other, we’re growing our knowledge, understanding, and support for one another. “

Hannah Kelly, Content Apprentice 

With positions ranging from management to apprentice, there is a wide collection of experience within the team, and each member brings their own set of unique skills and talent to the industry. 

Finding women in leadership roles can be a challenge, particularly for male dominated industries, but the representation is slowly improving. Since 2011, the proportion of women in senior management roles across the globe has increased by almost 10% and the aim is to see that continue rising. With support and action from everyone, there will no longer be a fight for equal opportunities for women, but instead the chance to provide our own skills and qualities to management positions. 

To see what you can get involved in today’s International Women’s day, head over to their website https://www.internationalwomensday.com/  

Gen Z – do you have a recruitment strategy for them?

Each generation that is born, brings something completely different. Understanding and accepting this is important. Why? Because it tells us how we are growing and evolving, as well as predicting what might come next. New paradigms mean new strategies and with millennials as the globalization era, generation Z is the digital era. With many parts of life accessible via online methods, it would likely be a waste of effort and resources to force keeping old-fashioned ones.

It’s not just the ease of having online access to everything for this generation, but the environmental awareness that comes with it. Removing paper filing and records keeps companies more conscious on their waste impact, as well as the bonus of being able to access your business anywhere, at any time, by anyone you wish with the convenience of a shared online space.

Who is Generation Z?

Generation Z is roughly people who were born between 1996 to 2010. This age group is ranged between 11 to 25 years, meaning they are already in various workforce industries, and exactly why companies need to start thinking about their strategy for recruiting this generation – they have probably learnt to swipe before they can speak…

So, let’s go through some of the characteristics that Gen Z has:

Their social media habits differ from previous generations – even millennials. For example, on average, Gen Z uses their smartphones 15.4 hours per week—more than any other type of device.

They are the most diverse generation yet – They are very open to new ideas/concepts and have a strong sense of self-expression. Not something to be afraid of as an employer. This makes for a far more diverse range of new thoughts and practices that can be implemented by your business, opening up the potential to expand and appeal to future generations.

Not utilising platforms that have a far higher traffic than is achievable through paper CVs, could see you missing out on an opportunity to reach a vast number of potential candidates. These include social media site of which this generation are frequently connected to in one form or another.

Millennials were the ones that saw the birth of social media – however generation Z are the ones who came out of the womb using it. Statistics show that:

They spend an average of 15.4 hours a week on a smartphone

78% of people between the age group of 18 – 24 years use Snapchat

71% of people between the age group of 18 – 24 years use Instagram

95% of people between the age group of 18 – 24 years use YouTube

Gen Z people using Facebook dropped by 20% between 2015 to 2018. During the same duration, usage of snapchat and Instagram increased by 28% and 20% respectively.

While a few millennials used LinkedIn, statistics show how hardly any of Gen Z use the platform.

Why is recruiting Gen Z Different?

Recruitment generally speaking, is a combination of marketing and sales. You want to attract candidates and convert them into successful hires. When finding the right candidate, you look for the most relevant skill set.

Millennials go straight to job boards such as Indeed & CV library, making it easy for companies to post on these sites and follow up with emails to get the candidates attention. But… things are starting to change now. It shows that generation Z have a briefer attention span, preferring visual mediums, rather than text driven content. With how easy it is to have an abundance of information at your fingertips, it is no wonder that companies might be finding it harder to stand out in the sea of adverts, announcements, and articles.

Generation Z love for content to be right in front of them, which is why they like in-app notifications, push notifications and social media over email.

What changes can we make in recruitment for Generation Z?

Recruitment is very traditional – they rely on email, job boards and telephoning people. So how can we up our game? Here are a few strategies we could be using to recruit Gen Z:

Get a company YouTube Channel – remember they are a visual generation. Everyone’s time is valuable so avoiding big walls of text can be far less of a deterrent. On the channel, show the behind the scenes and the companies’ achievements, appealing to a more relaxed work environment.

Facebook Advertisement – Using ads that will crop up across all social media channels is a great way to recruit candidates. Also makes the process a lot quicker. Facebook can target certain audiences with the interests and skills that you want.

Make your website interactive – put on your website as many videos you can, over big lengthy text. Don’t forget as well, the longer someone stays on you website the higher your SEO will rank.

SMS text marketing – instead of emails, send follow up messages through text. This is the mobile generation after all.


Now that we have observed how generation Z use social media and technology, we can see how different they are… even from the generation just before! They look at the world differently, and that’s because they can see the world from just a touch of a button. So, get those visuals in place because with generation Z, if they can’t see you, they won’t use you.

‘Build the future’ in this years’ National Apprenticeship week 

National Apprenticeships week for 2021 starts on Monday 8th February and hosts a wide range of events and activities for you to get involved with. Whether you are stepping out of school or looking for something different, apprenticeships offer the chance to learn skills and trades while still earning an income. Knowing where to go in a life can be difficult at any stage so there is no discrimination against those looking to experience the benefits an apprenticeship can provide.   

For uncertain parents, carers, students, and workers this year’s National Apprenticeship week will bring together great groups of past apprentices, employers, and training providers to discuss any questions you may have. With a collection of virtual talks and presentations, there are plenty of opportunities to raise concerns or queries about working in various positions. Even if you’re just a little foggy on some details, we are all together to bring awareness and guidance.   

Apprenticeships provide an opportunity to earn while you learn; working in a role where you get to be hands-on alongside your education. It creates a balanced environment of work and learning to allow for apprentices to develop at their own pace and use experience on the job to help them. For those looking to change career or try out an industry that they are unqualified in, apprenticeships allow for the chance to gain knowledge and qualifications without having to go back to full time education or lose out on earnings. Guidance and mentoring are major aspects of an apprenticeship, so you will never be going through your journey blindly. They are there to help lead people through a potentially unfamiliar industry, using their expertise to guide the way. 

Highfield want to create opportunities to anyone keen to learn, providing various apprenticeships and trainee roles like my own position as Content Apprentice. I left University with a degree in film production and the certainty that no matter what roll I took on, it had to be creative. Less than a year later, the pandemic hit and pretty much shut down the film industry, bringing about a vast amount of uncertainty for these creative roles. However, I saw this as an opportunity. With so many people at home, the digital presence for businesses become paramount. While I had my knowledge and skills for film, I wanted to understand more around content and marketing. Content creation is such a huge part of modern-day society and I only knew a small part of it. Within this role, I will be able to experience far more skills whilst still having the opportunity to utilise my degree; all in an environment that respects the fact I am learning. This has meant I can develop without pressure or worry about being overwhelmed by my inexperience within this sector. 

Many businesses are supporting and providing these opportunities and that figure keeps growing. With far more opportunities available, be sure to check what your apprenticeship contains to be certain you’re getting a legitimate experience. There should be: 

  • A recognised qualification 
  • Communication with a college or training centre 
  • Agreed minimum pay rate 

Apprenticeships are beneficial not just to potential apprentices but also to businesses. They open up the workforce, broadening the skills and allow for a younger generation to be targeted in educating about otherwise lesser-known job roles. Hands on experience is often missed out on, so creating experiences and awareness will help appeal to many who are looking for future careers. National Apprenticeship week hopes to do this via interactive activities and talks, expanding its reach over the years to bring information and attention regarding the benefits and opportunities within apprenticeships. 

Don’t forget to get involved in all the virtual talks and presentations happening this year. We may not be able to get together in person, but we can still reach out to anyone with questions or queries about getting into an apprenticeship. Grab a place in any of the live talks from the STEM hub taking place throughout the week. Even if you don’t know much about the career opportunities in STEM subjects, admission is completely free, and you may discover a passion you never knew you had! 

You can visit our jobs page HERE.

Want to work here? Follow us on Instagram @highfieldrec or check out our Work For Us Page.

How you can have a successful career in recruitment

Working in recruitment can be daunting. It can be a rollercoaster ride, but it is one that you will want to go and ride again and again. At the age of seven when our parents, teachers or peers asked us what we want to be when we are older, I am sure none of us was shouting “a recruitment consultant”. However, it is a role that can help you build a foundation and a solid career and anyone can take the plunge if they feel that they have what it takes.

There are a few qualities which can help you become a successful recruitment consultant, I have pinpointed a couple. If you feel like any of these reflect you, then why not take the plunge into the world of recruitment.

A confident Communicator

Being a confident communicator is important when working in recruitment because you want to build the most important brand, YOU! Dealing with clients and candidates on a daily basis will be a key part of your role, delivering a great service and building relationships is crucial, so ensuring you can deliver information confidently and in a professional manner will help with your achievements.

Show Tenacity and Be Positive

Getting a no is all part of the game. However, the strength of picking yourself up and moving onto the next is vital. It can be hard to stay positive, however, positivity and determination is a skill that will keep you ahead of the game, a knockback should only encourage your willingness to learn and keep going.

Willingness to Progress

Career Progression in recruitment is an area that attracts most people to the industry. It can be a fast ladder to climb if you have the drive to achieve it. A structured career progression is one thing that most people will be looking for in a career and recruitment can really offer this. You can start as a Graduate/Trainee Recruitment Consultant and with hard work you can climb the ladder consistently throughout your early years in recruitment.

Be persistent and persuasive in a Professional Manner

There is nothing wrong with being persistent and persuasive, however, in the recruitment industry, it can be best to make sure you are doing this in a professional manner. Don’t use the pushy sales person approach, know when to push back when a client says no or if they are ignoring you (it does happen). You are always leaving an impression when you communicate with clients and you don’t want to build your brand negatively. Like our own values at Highfield, always show professionalism and integrity.

Are you looking for a career in recruitment and possess any of the above attributes? Then we want to hear from you! At Highfield Professional Solutions, we pride ourselves on our professionalism, integrity and expertise and we are always on the lookout for talented individuals to join us!

Contact our Talent Acquisition Specialist, Kay Fadden on 01489 774 010 or email [email protected] for more information.


The Construction skills shortage continues

The construction skills shortage has been a hot topic throughout 2017 and it seems that it is continuing throughout 2018. As of now the skills shortage in construction has hit a record high. In response to the Migration Advisory Committee’s Interim report, the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) has said the industry requires a serious delivery plan in place for post-Brexit skills and immigration policy.

Commenting on the Migration Advisory Committee’s Interim update, Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB, said: “The Migration Advisory Committee’s Interim update has set out the concerns and evidence which construction and a wide range of industries have presented.”

In their quarterly report on the current state of the construction industry, the FMB found that those that are affected are finding it particularly hard to recruit carpenters and bricklayers, as well has a huge shortage for skilled electricians, plumbers, and plasterers.

With the Government’s promise of building 300,000 new homes a year in England alone. The questions of “Who will build all of this?” stands. With the increasing demand for skilled workers, the wages are increasing, and the cost of materials are at a new high. This is clearly causing a negative effect on the construction companies dealing with this issue.

With Carillion recently announcing its liquidation, a move that affected the jobs of thousands of employees, it is surprising that this has not been an issue in regard to the skills shortage saga. The FMB confirmed that it was currently co-operating with the Construction Industry Training Board as well as the Department for Work and Pensions to place former Carillion employees with small construction firms needing skilled workers.

So, what can be done to combat this skills shortage? I think there may be some simple things that can be tackled to cut the skills shortage.

Gender diversity is a hot topic at the moment in all ways imaginable. However, it may be something that could really help bridge the skills gap. Making the industry much more inclusive could mean more women in the trade. This would encourage a whole new talent pool of candidates that could ultimately begin to mend the current issues.

Making construction a bit more well known could really boost the industry. Currently the construction industry isn’t ever really put out there, especially on the mainstream media. It is a possibility that if construction was portrayed better across all avenues, this could help improve this skills shortage. Construction is so important to help our economy grow; without construction workers there will be no more new homes, or new educational buildings or hospitals. It is something that needs to be considered.

Education on the industry in schools could help inspire the new generations of workers. Showing young people the choices they have within the industry could really push them to take the vocational route and undertake apprenticeships in the trades currently seeing themselves in a skills shortage. Whilst not a short term fix, this could prove a long term solution.

What do you think? Are you a construction worker? Do you agree with the skills shortage saga? Tweet us at @HighfieldREC to let us know.

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