Results Day – what next?

Congratulations to everyone receiving their A-Level results today. Whatever grades you achieve, this is a time to feel excited about your future.

Getting into university is sure to be a clear goal for many. However, it’s important to remember that it’s by no means the only path to success.

Why not consider an apprenticeship? They are becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason – read on to find out why you might choose one, and how to get one.

Working for a company as an apprentice gives you the opportunity to gain on-the-job experience – something that businesses really value. And at the same time, you’ll be earning a wage. These are real opportunities helping people take that first step in their career, and they’re open to anyone over 16.

Long gone are the days when apprenticeships were exclusively a route into specialist trades – it’s still a great way to get into those professions, but now everyone from law firms to software companies is offering increasingly competitive apprenticeship routes that can lead to really rewarding careers.

And the numbers are only continuing to grow. The Government has committed to creating three million more apprenticeships by 2020, so now is a great time to take advantage of the huge range of opportunities out there.

It’s never been easier to take the first steps. The National Apprenticeship Service has developed a great website, a one-stop-shop for information and with listings of lots of apprenticeship vacancies.

Or even simpler – take a look at the list of regional finalists for this year’s National Apprenticeship Awards, which lists the very best apprenticeship employers.

Don’t forget that you can talk to a Jobcentre Plus advisor linked to your school or college about your options or to the National Careers Service or Money Advice Service to help you work out what route to take. Jobcentre Plus advisors can also help you strengthen your CV, put you in touch with businesses that are recruiting, or help you refine your job-search. 

As well as apprenticeships, there are sector-based work academies and vocational training courses that can be great options for someone as they start out on their career. You could also take a look at Universal Jobmatch, one of the country’s largest jobsites, to help you.

And most importantly, remember that whatever happens today, don’t think this is make or break – in fact, it’s just the beginning.