Wisbech company helps apprentices

A Wisbech-based property maintenance firm has given apprentices the chance to work for Norwich City Council (NCC).

As a company dedicated to training, skill development and providing career opportunities, Foster Property Maintenance (FPM) jumped at the opportunity to offer young people training when the opportunity recently arose.

This came about as part of the company’s Eastern Procurement Consortium (EPC) tender submission for NCC’s Planned Works Programme. Fosters committed to offer training for the contract duration and just ten months into the contract, the young people it mentors are already exceeding expectations.

FPM currently has three apprentices working for Norwich City Council, two electricians and a plumber working with qualified tradesmen as part of the Planned Works Programme. It has also made a provisional offer to an electrical apprentice to join them for the start of the new school year in September 2013.

The recruitment process for FPM apprentices was carried out in conjunction with Norwich City College and saw the property maintenance specialist inundated with applications from prospective candidates.

FPM carried out a robust selection process, advised by the City College. The company was very impressed with the overall standard and shortlisted a significant number of candidates for interview. This made the selection process for just three places very difficult.

The selected apprentices started last October and have already made significant progress along their chosen career paths. The experienced tradesmen who are mentoring them have been impressed with their knowledge and commitment.

An apprenticeship with FPM was important to Jonathan Carver, 19: “Having done a plumbing course at college, I have thoroughly enjoyed learning new skills and developing what I already know. I am really enjoying working with the heating engineers at FPM and being part of the Foster team. It is great to be working on site and picking up and learning new skills.”

Lewis Jones, 19, added: “Going to college and obtaining my level 2 in Electrical Installation has given me a good step into getting a good career and earning good money for my future. I am enjoying working with Nathan and Tony from Fosters and am thrilled to finally be able to get experience on site.”

James Ellis, FPM Contracts Manager, said: “It is fantastic to help such keen and eager-to-learn youngsters gain experience and education in the trade they wish to pursue. Our apprentices are doing a great job and we are taking every opportunity to help them develop throughout their time with us.”