With National Apprenticeship Week 2019 beginning on 4th March, we hear from 3B Training – which reveals why Generation Z is the best place business owners can look to gain enthusiastic, switched on workers.
When your company’s workload begins to pile up and you need an extra pair of hands on a project, there are a few avenues you can take. You can hire a freelancer, get in touch with a contractor, or spend every waking moment working on things yourself (not a great option).
Recently, though, more and more businesses are taking advantage of an underestimated option: apprenticeships.
Apprenticeships are a fantastic way for businesses to gain productive, enthusiastic workers while also investing in developing skilled employees. As well as having the financial benefit of low staff costs, they provide a great source of energy and fresh ideas. The government is also in full support, as the Apprenticeship Levy helps businesses fund apprentices with the aim of supporting quality training, with employers at the centre.
If you are looking to hire an apprentice, Gen Z is your hunting ground and those running their own plumbing and heating business can utilise the skills this group can offer and ensure you are investing in the future generation of your industry.
What is Gen Z?
Often, people categorise everyone under 30 as ‘Millennials’ but this isn’t technically correct. Millennials are categorised as those born between 1981 and 1994, making them 22 to 37 years of age today. This makes Gen Z – those born after 1995 – the workforce of tomorrow, so it’s important you know who they are and what drives them.
Here are 3B Training’s top benefits of hiring a Gen Z apprentice:
1. They are tech savvy
Whereas Millennials grew up in the digital age, Gen Z’ers were born into it. And while it might be tempting for some to bellyache about them being glued to their smartphones, Gen Z’s technophilia comes with a useful side-effect: they can easily wrap their heads around new technology.
With vast amounts of new technology entering the trades every day, this could prove hugely beneficial to your business. Whereas some employees may not like the new smart controls, apps and connected appliances and tools that are becoming increasingly popular in the plumbing and heating arena, a Gen Z apprentice will be able to learn them inside out.
2. They are masters of multitasking
With a younger generation that has grown up streaming a Youtube tutorial as they Facetime a friend, while adding shopping to their virtual basket, is it any surprise that they are skilled at multitasking? Whether they are posting, commenting or swiping, Gen Z’ers have adapted to using multiple platforms simultaneously. This ingrained skill is adaptable to almost any work environment, meaning you’ll have no trouble putting this to good use.
With many trade professionals now relying on social media and websites to promote their business and build rapport with others in the industry, having someone who can distribute their skills across multiple channels and platforms will enable your business to encompass a broader reach and keep up with the competition.
3. They have a short attention span (yes, that’s a good thing)
Gen Z’ers are constantly absorbing information, often in the blink of an eye. Spending their youth surrounded by apps such as Snapchat and Instagram has made receiving constant updates the norm, which has ultimately stunted their attention spans.
This has, however, given Gen Z’ers an advantage when it comes to absorbing information. As they are accustomed to receiving a barrage of updates, Gen Z’ers have a knack for processing information faster than other generations and are highly adaptable to change. This means when it comes to learning the complexities of certain plumbing and heating tasks or absorbing new industry legislation, they will be able to do so at a much more efficient pace.
4. They are entrepreneurial thinkers
Gen Z’ers have grown up in a world of innovation, full of developing technology and connected to every corner of the globe. They have seen what is possible and want a piece of the action for themselves.
This has resulted in a generation of young adults who are starting their careers with an entrepreneurial head on their shoulders. They are full of ideas so use them before someone else does!
Generate new skills
Gen Z has an advantage over older generations, simply due to how they have been raised in the digital age. By being familiar with new technology, expert multitaskers and full of fresh ideas they are in a great position to become an asset to your business. Plus, as they are quick at absorbing new information, they are ideal candidates for training courses to help them develop further.
The plumbing and heating industry is awash with a multitude of training courses as tradespeople continually look to develop the skills they have learnt. Apprenticeships are ideally placed candidates who can attend these sessions and continually develop as the industry does.
Ryan Latham, Senior Marketing Executive for 3B Training, has experienced first-hand how businesses can benefit from hiring a Gen Z apprentice. He commented: “As a former apprentice myself I am definitely on board with the system, it’s a great opportunity to get on the first step of your career ladder.
“We also have a Gen Z’er apprentice working under me in our marketing department and she has been highly beneficial. She is highly tech-savvy and has actually taught me a thing or two about newer social platforms.
“She can complete tasks almost twice as fast as I can and to a great standard; don’t write off the Gen Z generation!”