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5 Things You Need To Consider When Hiring A Digital Apprentice

By Amy @BubbleJobs

If you run a digital business, chances are you’ll have already considered taking on an apprentice to join your team. Why? Because they can help to bring a new voice to your company, it’s a great way to do your bit to tackle youth unemployment, there are a number of different digital apprenticeship frameworks available – and there’s even help and support available (including financial!) from the government if you need it.

At the moment, we’re filling our Portal up with lots of useful info on digital apprenticeships – and we’re also in the process of taking on our own digital apprentice to join the team here at Bubble HQ. This week, we’ve been interviewing for said candidate – which is what has inspired me to write this blog.

You see, when considering candidates for our apprenticeship vacancy, we actually found it pretty difficult. Why? Because it’s such a different role. It’s one step beyond entry-level – it’s almost pre-entry-level – so there were lots of different elements we needed to consider when reviewing applications.

That said; here are the top five things we think you need to consider when hiring a digital apprentice.

1. Experience: 

OK, so at this level, the applicants probably won’t have that much experience in digital (particularly paid!) – but if they really are interested in working in the sector, they should have some! Whether it’s a blog, experience with social media or even a simple website build, the best candidates should have already used their initiative to set up their own site/blog to explore their interests – and this should be evident on their application form or CV. If they don’t have any, consider what other work experience they do have – and whether any of the skills and experience they have in this role could be applied to your apprenticeship.

2. Qualifications:

As we’ve said before, qualifications aren’t the be-all and end-all when it comes to digital vacancies and apprenticeships, however it’s still important to consider qualifications. If you want to take on a social media/digital marketing apprentice and the candidate you’re reviewing failed to achieve a grade C at GCSE, you might want to reconsider because it suggests they haven’t got the best grasp of English and you’ll have to check every tweet or Facebook post before it gets sent out. Consider which qualifications are relevant to your role – and what grades are really necessary.

3. Knowledge Of Your Company/Role:

Depending on the training provider you provide, preliminary interviews should have already been carried out with the candidates before you see the application forms/CVs – so it’s important to check the notes. Look at how informed and knowledgeable the interviewer said the candidate was – and how much they seemed to know about your company. Unless your company is top secret and you have no info on your website, there’s really no excuse for them not to know the details! Also consider the answers the candidate put on your application form – and how these relate to your business.

4. Attitude:

Now, this is a big one – and it’s probably only something you can really assess when interviewing. If you’re anything like us, you’ll have a small team running your business – so it’s imperative you take on an apprentice with the right attitude to ensure they’ll fit in well with your business – you don’t want to take anyone on with a bad attitude who’ll end up being more effort than they’re worth. Consider how much they want the apprenticeship, what they think can bring to the role – and how hard you think they’ll be willing to work.

5. Commitment: 

Depending on the level of the apprenticeship you’re offering, it could last between 12 and 18 months so you need to consider a candidate’s commitment. Consider their work history – what they’ve stuck at in the past and how much of a flight risk they might be – needless to say you don’t want the apprentice to quit after a couple of weeks!

What’s more, if you’re a small company, chances are you won’t be willing/able to give your apprentice a salary of more than £15K – so again, it’s worth carefully considering their attitude and how committed they might be if they’re not bringing a lot of money in each month. Yes, the opportunity and insight you’re providing should outweigh the salary to the right candidate… but not every candidate will be able to look at things from a long-term perspective!


Obviously when it comes to choosing an apprentice, there’s lots to consider and it’s obviously all going to come down to your individual needs and what’s best for the company – but hopefully this should give you a good starting point.

If you are considering taking on an apprentice, keep an eye on this blog – because I’ll be posting up more apprenticeship advice articles and posts as we get further along the process of taking on our own digital apprentice.


One Comment

  1. Ariel Cunningham

    thank you for sharing this information. its really helpful to choose

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