H&H Group has always believed in nurturing the talents of the next generation, and the group’s five companies will all be celebrating National Apprenticeship Week, highlighting the fantastic opportunities apprenticeship schemes offer for all ages to learn their trade and develop their career paths.

With over 350 staff employed across the Carlisle-based business, H&H Group CEO Richard Rankin believes that apprenticeships are fundamental to the group’s future.
“As a company, we are committed to the future success of our own business and the regions we operate in, and we believe in creating chances for all, in particular supporting the younger generation across all our divisions. If we give them the right opportunities, they will themselves become the opportunity makers and they will be the next generation who will forge the future success for the H&H Group.”
The apprenticeship schemes allow H&H to give the next generation confidence, support, and ultimately a real role leading to a long-term partnership and commitment. 
“For us, our apprenticeships enable us to take on young, willing staff with no experience of full-time work. The apprentices receive support and specialist training, and legislative training modules such as health and safety in the workplace. For the long-term partnership to continue they of course have to demonstrate they can do their job.”
With a diverse range of interests, the H&H Group PLC offers apprenticeships in every division of the business including livestock and machinery auctioneers, valuers, chartered surveyors, property and estate agents, auction rooms, commercial printers, graphic designers, digital marketers, and insurance brokers. 
“That means we can offer a very wide range of different work experiences to suit different people and their own individual talents and interests. We can also offer all sorts of different apprenticeship schemes to suit individual preferences, but all of them provide the same unbeatable combination of experience in a real workplace, alongside continuing academic study towards gaining real qualifications.”
The H&H Group CEO believes apprenticeships can be an ideal route into the world of work for both businesses and budding employees.
“As a business, the apprenticeship scheme brings us people with enthusiasm and fresh ideas, who want to work, learn, and upskill. We can give them the opportunity to learn and earn with us, which reduces the cost of their academic education and qualification, and that in turn gives us the benefit of the additional skills they acquire in their steep academic learning curve.”
Sasha Thomson and Ellie Slack are just two apprentices currently learning and earning with the H&H Group’s businesses:
Sasha is taking a customer service apprenticeship with H&H run by the British Printing Industry Federation.
She said: “After studying illustration at university, I started working in retail and then applied for an 18-month apprenticeship role to develop my education and my career opportunities. I have been here for over a year now, and it’s been great working here. It is incredibly interesting to see behind the scenes and discover how the business really works, and it has definitely developed my professional skills. The academic learning has helped a lot with my customer service skills in the business and the company has been completely supportive in giving me the time to complete it.”
Ellie Slack is a dairy farmer’s daughter from near Cumwhitton in Cumbria, currently completing an account executive apprenticeship with H&H Insurance Brokers run by the Aviva and Davies Groups. She said: “When you are completing A-levels at school  it is almost taken as standard that you will go to university, but I wanted to explore my options, and I preferred to be in control of my own working destiny. I was interested in apprenticeships and when I saw the H&H Insurance Apprenticeship advertised, I thought it would be an interesting opportunity. I started six month ago and I am really enjoying it.”
Richard Rankin concludes: “The apprenticeship schemes we celebrate in National Apprenticeship Week allow us to give the next generation a solid foundation for their careers. They also allow us to offer long term opportunities, and many of the apprentices we have nurtured over the years stay with us and build successful and fulfilling careers within the H&H Group. 
“For students it is a doorway into the industry and the working environment, and we can provide  them with a variety of experiences in different locations and different job roles to turbo charge their careers. For us, we get access to fresh minds, ideas and energy to benefit every aspect of our group.  I would urge every company and every young person looking for their best way to embark on their working lives to look at what apprenticeships have to offer. For both us and our apprentices it has proved to be the best of both worlds.”