Investment in apprentices is paying dividends for award finalist bank

Posted on by karen.smith

Lloyds Banking Group’s group lead for emerging talent Emily Austin with apprentice Abigal Aston.

Lloyds Banking Group’s group lead for emerging talent Emily Austin with apprentice Abigal Aston.

Apprenticeships have proved a valuable investment for one of the country’s leading financial services companies, which is in contention to win a major award at the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru 2015.

Lloyds Banking Group is one of three finalists in the Macro Employer of the Year category at the high profile awards ceremony to be held at the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport on Thursday, October 29.

The coveted awards celebrate the outstanding achievements of those who have exceeded expectations, shown a dynamic approach to training and demonstrated initiative, enterprise, innovation, creativity and commitment to the improvement of skills development for the Welsh economy.

Jointly organised by the Welsh Government and the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW), the awards are sponsored by Pearson PLC and media partner is Media Wales. The Apprenticeship Programme in Wales is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.

Lloyds Banking Group has more than 5,000 staff in Wales, including 288 apprentices, with large operational centres in Newport and Cardiff as well as 100 branches throughout the country.

“Our strategy is built on being the best bank for customers and creating value by investing where a real difference can be made. We have a totally inclusive approach in terms of learning and development and this is reflected in our Apprenticeship offering,” said Lorraine Poole, emerging talent manager at Lloyds Banking Group.”

All apprentices are employed in permanent roles and the company works closely with its learning and training provider, learndirect, to ensure they receive the right training and support.

“Apprenticeships have become a very successful way of building a diverse talent pipeline, exceeding expectations in terms of commercial benefits and transforming how we attract and develop new colleagues joining the organisation.”

Throughout their Apprenticeship each individual has access to bespoke mid and end programme events with other apprentices and a dedicated support structure with an alumni mentor.

“Data shows apprentices are not only highly engaged but they experience accelerated levels of promotion compared to non-apprentice peers and are twice as likely to progress at entry level,” added Lorraine.

Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology Julie James congratulated Lloyds Banking Group and the other 36 award finalists. “We have some truly exceptional apprentices here in Wales and the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru provide a perfect platform for us to celebrate their hard work and achievements,” she said.

“Equally important are the training providers and employers who go the extra mile to support their apprentices. Developing skilled young people is vital for our economy. The Welsh Government is committed to training programmes such as Apprenticeships but investment must be a shared responsibility with the education sector, businesses and individuals.”

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