Case Studies

Edward Wright, 18, from Hull – warehousing apprentice at Nellist & Co.

In early 2010, Edward faced a highly competitive job market whilst trying to forge a career within the warehousing and logistics industry.

Then he responded to a call from YHATA, which was short-listing apprentices for wholesale fruit and vegetables supplier, Nellist and Co, and began a one-year apprenticeship with the company.

Edward combined his job at Nellist with training and qualifications at Hull College, with support and guidance from YHATA throughout the apprenticeship.

He is now a Trainee Warehouse Manager at Nellist, since taking on a permanent role with the company last year. He said: “The support and guidance from YHATA has been fantastic, and doing this apprenticeship has allowed me to gain good qualifications and quality work experience. My apprenticeship has been nothing but positive, and has allowed me to forge a career for myself.”

Edward went on to be named employee of the month in December last year, and is the first of twenty young people to have gained full-time employment following their apprenticeships through YHATA.

Jamie Nellist, from Nellist & Co, said: “We were looking for a new recruit for some time, but we couldn’t find someone that was right for the job. We then decided to approach YHATA, which managed the screening, selection, interview and assessment process, and matched the most suitable applicants to our business, saving us a huge amount of time and money.

“Edward was intent on a career within our business, and he’s never let me down. He also appreciated that he had plenty of scope for advancement following the completion of his apprenticeship, and his enthusiasm for what he does is incredible. The apprenticeship has been very successful, and we’re pleased to say that in time, we will be taking on more apprentices.”

Provided by Yorkshire and Humberside Apprenticeship Training Agency (YHATA).


Mason Hardwick and Perry Minnett – both 17 and apprentice engineers. Rebecca Williams, 19 – business administration apprentice.  All apprentices are from Mansfield.

Vision Apprentices is working with Advanex Europe Ltd in Southwell, Nottinghamshire, which manufactures precision metal components to businesses all over the world, to supply them with apprentices.

Caroline Moss, HR Manager at Advanex in Southwell, said:

“I have found that Vision staff are very helpful and the service has been very smooth.  All of the candidates who came through for the engineering apprentice vacancy appeared very interested in engineering. It was obvious that Vision had screened the most appropriate candidates relevant to our company and our business.” 

Apprentice engineer Mason Hardwick.

Mason started as an apprentice engineer with Advanex in 2010 measuring springs and programming the machines which make them. In January 2011 he was offered a full-time job. 

Mason said: “It’s great that I’m in a secure job with a world-wide company and I’m getting a weekly wage.  I am very lucky that I get to work on the latest engineering machinery and I’m quite keen to train further after this course and aim for my level 3.” 

Apprentice engineer Perry Minnett.

Perry also started in 2010 as an apprentice engineer doing similar work to Mason with Advanex and was offered a full-time job in January 2011. 

He said: “I’ve had some experience on various bits of machinery but I’ve come into contact with much more high-tech and new machinery at Advanex.  I’m really benefitting from working with people with great experience in engineering and I’m learning lots from their experience.” 

Business administration apprentice Rebecca Williams.

Rebecca began in 2010 as a business administration apprentice. Her job entails answering the office telephones, organising the filing systems, arranging diaries, welcoming visitors, taking minutes of team meetings and updating computer systems.  She now works full-time for the company. 

She said: “I left school with 10 GCSEs and then went on to sixth form, where I gained four diplomas in IT and administration.  I knew I wanted a career in administration and looked on the Vision Apprentices website and discovered a vacancy on there.” 

Provided by Vision Apprentices.


Stephen Kay, 18, from Gloucester – engineering apprentice.

Stephen, 18, is an engineering apprentice with Service Aluminium of Gloucester. The company manufacture aluminium dies, used by various industries including window manufacturing. 

Stephen works in a variety of areas involved in producing the aluminium dies. He said: “I am particularly pleased I have found a job that requires quite a lot of thinking but is still very hands on. This is exactly what I was looking for.  Apprenticeships are a great opportunity to train and get the right qualifications whilst working and earning a wage. You also get used to the workplace and gain additional skills. 

 “I enjoy every part of this job. I enjoy working with the other engineers and watching how they work, so I can develop my skills. 

 “Eventually, I would like to be working at Service Aluminium as a qualified engineer. I would like to be multi-skilled in the workplace and be of real value to the company.” 

Services Aluminium General Manager Paul Cook said: “Stephen has settled in very well and he has become a useful member of the team. The SWAC route works very well for us because it takes all the risk away from the employer. I would certainly recommend it to other employers.” 

Provided by South West Apprenticeship Company (SWAC).


Jade Simpson, 19, from Walthamstow, London – finance apprentice

The London Apprenticeship Company placed Jade in a purchase ledger role at Look Ahead Housing and Care. Look Ahead are a Housing Association with over 30 years worth of experience who were keen on giving a bright young person a helping hand onto the career ladder. Having just completed her Level 2 qualification in Business Administration, Jade has had a very rewarding experience. 

Jade said: “I was applying for work for about six months before I applied for an apprenticeship. What I was finding was, in spite of having good grades, I just wasn’t employable – I didn’t have any experience. Since being at Look Ahead, I have gone from being very nervous in the first week to being able to deal confidently with suppliers. Later down the line in my apprenticeship I even gave training to new members of staff.” 

Lorna Wilcockson, Finance Manager at Look Ahead Housing and Care, said:

 “Jade is great. She is an asset to the team. Ultimately, employers like experience, the apprenticeship gives young people a real opportunity to compete with more mature and experienced candidates because it gives them transferable skills real experience in paid work. I think what also makes it work for the employer is LAC’s Apprentice Coordinators. Vanessa, Jade’s Apprentice Coordinator has been really helpful and has always been on hand whenever Jade needed advice, lessening any perceived burden on the employer.”

Provided by London Apprenticeship Company (LAC)


Tom Coyne, 18, from South Norwood, London, logistics apprentice

Croydon based PF Whitehead is one of the UK’s largest transportation logistics providers with a large range of blue chip clients, including B&Q and IKEA.

Through SLB ATA, the company took their first apprentice – 18 year-old Tom Coyne from South Norwood. PF Whitehead was so impressed with Tom that they offered him a full-time job and took on three more apprentices. 

 “Tom is a breath of fresh air around the place. He’s a good lad who wants to work,” said Managing Director Peter Whitehead. “He is learning about the whole business and observing how the whole process operates.”

 Tom’s enthusiasm and commitment to the job led to the firm expanding his tasks to include dealing direct with customers.

He successfully completed his apprenticeship and was delighted to accept the company’s offer to work full-time.  Tom said: “I left school at 16 and didn’t manage to get into college so started working from then on. This is a very good place to work. I see myself staying here.”

Provided by SLB Group Apprentice Training Agency

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