Logistics company DSV has launched its first-ever apprentice scheme in the UK, as the country’s unemployment rate for young people approaches record levels.
The apprentice scheme, which was launched earlier this year, places school leavers in roles across the company’s four divisions: DSV Road, DSV Air & Sea, DSV Solutions and DSV Commercials.
HR Director Frank Hall says the scheme offers school leavers, who are facing a tough job market, the opportunity to complete a qualification while gaining experience working in the logistics industry.
At the same time, DSV has the opportunity to develop young and enthusiastic members of staff, while doing its part to help the 949,000 unemployed 16 to 25-year-olds, just 2,000 people short of reaching record levels, according to Office for National Statistics figures for the quarter ending June.
Mr Hall says that if the apprentices perform well during their time with DSV, they are likely to be offered a job.
"So far the quality of candidate has been great and we would hope they will all be able to stay on at DSV at the end of their training," he says.
"The programme gives us the opportunity to teach the apprentices how important it is for us to understand client and potential client needs and requirements.
"And, as the programme can last up to a year, it gives us the chance to see how well they work within the company and assess whether they can make high-quality employees, if not, then they have a qualification – an NVQ in Logistics – that they can transfer to other companies or industries."
So far in 2011, the company has appointed fourteen apprentices – ten at DSV Road, one at DSV Air & Sea, one at DSV Solutions and two at DSV Commercials – but it could employ 30 this year if the right candidates are found.
The on-going programme lasts between nine months and one year and DSV plans to continue the scheme next year.
During the past year, DSV has emphasised people development. In August, DSV Road and DSV Solutions launched a Sales Academy in the UK, which is a series of workshops to help their sales staff look at client needs and how to meet them, while the divisions have just completed their first recruitment programme aimed at graduates.
And late last year, DSV Road put its drivers through CPC courses as part of their compliance with new government requirements.