• Optimism: 12 apprentices taken on in this year’s 2020 intake for Darke & Taylor (D&T)
• Commitment: over 75% of D&T’s 217-strong workforce either have been, or are, apprentices
• Longevity: D&T took on its first apprentice in 1960
Just because COVID-19 halted industry in the UK in 2020, it didn’t put a stop to D&T’s apprenticeship recruitment programme.
“We must continue to invest in the future of our industry in these testing times. To not do so, would be unthinkable.”
Simon Newton, managing director D&T
September inductions COVID-style
Tuesday 8th September saw 12 eager new trainees turn up at D&T’s offices in Long Hanborough, Oxfordshire, to go through their 2 day-long induction process.
COVID-19 social distancing rules meant that there were some changes to the usual induction day process with additional sanitising throughout the day, individual packed lunches instead of a buffet, and social distancing applied for seating, presenting, and the all-important induction group photo.
“As the history of Darke & Taylor will testify, our apprentices have, and always will be, the future of the company and we look forward to seeing how this year’s intake develop in their careers.” Tanya Webb, Operations manager
Anatomy of an apprenticeship
Well over half of D&T’s employees either have been, or are currently, an apprentice. This commitment stretches back also to D&T’s formation in 1958, with the company taking on its first apprentice almost exactly 60 years ago back in 1960.
These days, apprenticeships offer a demanding mixture of the practical and academic, offering the prospect of a professional qualification in one of seven disciplines within four to five years. D&T currently offers apprenticeships in: Electrical, Structured Data Cabling, Fire & Security systems, Business Administration, Information Technology, HR & Building Services.
D&T remains immensely proud of its high apprenticeship retention rate (over 90%) as a demonstration of its ongoing commitment to apprenticeships.
Over 75% of D&T’s current workforce have either once been, or currently are, an apprentice, and with 60% of D&T’s senior management having started out as apprentices, there is no limit to where the 2020 batch might end up in a decade or so.
Darke & Taylor (D&T) is an Oxfordshire-based electrical contractor employing over 200 people. For more information, please contact Tanya Webb or visit www.darkeandtaylor.co.uk