Budding Finning apprentices listen to a presentation by existing apprentices at the recent interactive apprentice open day sessions at the Caterpillar UK dealer's Cannock, central England HQ
UK Caterpillar dealer Finning welcomed a host of young adults to its Cannock headquarters for interactive apprentice open day sessions. Held on the 9th and 10th of February 2015, the business showcased the Finning Training Academy facilities, coupled with its commitment to investing in talent from across the United Kingdom and Ireland. The academy had 240 registered applicants for the two days.
Four two hour sessions gave apprentice hopefuls the opportunity to gain valuable insight into their potential roles, whilst also getting a real feel for the culture of Finning as an organisation. After a hearty welcome by HR director Stuart Chapman, Finning apprentice programme manager Paul Lawson and Nicki Haywood, apprentice training co-ordinator, talked to the visitors about the scheme. The prospective students were then toured round the state-of-the-art workshop facilities by the training team and incumbent first year apprentices.
“We think it’s really important that our potential apprentices get the opportunity to meet the current team of Finning trainees,” said Jackie O’Brien, head of learning and development at Finning. “The best people to give the most accurate reflection of our training scheme are the apprentices themselves. This also allows our visitors to be more relaxed within a peer-to-peer environment, meaning they’re comfortable to ask the questions that really matter.
“We’re delighted with the interest the two days generated, especially that we welcomed so many people from all corners of the UK. Although our headquarters are here in Cannock, we have branches operating throughout England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Therefore it’s essential that we help inspire fresh talent from all areas.”
This year saw a greater focus of the two separate apprenticeships offered by the Finning Training Academy. The first is the traditional service engineer apprentice role, where successful applicants will be taught essential machine maintenance/servicing skills, trained on the latest diagnostic systems, advanced technologies and hi-tech tools.
The second is the Parts Sales and Operations scheme in partnership with Jaguar/Land Rover. This option offers the opportunity to receive plant maintenance training at the Jaguar/Land Rover Academy in Leamington Spa. The students then return to the Finning Training Academy to apply this knowledge to Finning’s parts and sales processes.
Following the open days, Stuart Chapman said: “There was a real buzz about the place on both days; it was fantastic to see so many eager faces interested in joining our industry. The prospective apprentices seemed to get a real understanding of the hands-on training approach we have here at Finning. We truly believe in learning through the combination of classroom and practical application and are proud of the facilities we have on offer, which I’m sure is part of the reason our apprenticeship program is so popular.”
The application process for apprentice places closes at the end of February, with both Finning Training Academy schemes beginning in September 2015. More information can be found at Finning website.