April 8, 2021
A Modern Approach to Apprenticeship
Throughout the last year, Faith Technologies has redefined what’s possible by breaking the mold of traditional apprenticeship. We have redesigned and rewritten curriculum for both our electrical and electronic systems technician apprenticeship programs, as well as reinvented our training delivery methods from instructor-led training to both virtual instructor-led training and self-study courses.
Faith Technologies is poised for substantial continued growth over the next several years and with the shortage of skilled labor, continuing to grow our apprenticeship program through our ground-up growth strategy remains critical to our success. That’s why we have added nearly 100 apprentices to our program just this year! In 2021, we have a goal to add another 300+ apprentices to the organization. These are new positions that we are actively hiring to fill.
Our modern approach to apprenticeship provides numerous benefits to the individual including:
- Self-Paced Scheduling: Our apprenticeship program is a combination of virtual instructor-led training and self-study classes. Classes are made available to apprentices throughout the year, and many are even available 24/7. Apprentices are required to complete at least two classes per month and can take classes when they best fit into their schedule and progress through a program level at their own pace, provided that their work performance aligns with this pace. This affords us the opportunity to provide a true merit-based training program to our employees, allowing our apprentices to progress through the program at their own pace to reach their career goals.
- Pay-Per-Class Compensation: As an incentive to continue learning and developing, we pay our apprentices a cash incentive for each class completed. This is above and beyond the apprentice’s normal hourly pay earned while performing work outside of training classes.
- Personal and Professional Development: In addition to technical curriculum, we have incorporated more than 75 hours of personal and professional development classes throughout the apprenticeship program. These classes build on one another as an apprentice progresses through the program by focusing on individual, peer and leadership development. The aim of this component is to develop not only technically competent team members, but also team players who exemplify our organization’s core values.
Since implementing our virtual apprenticeship program, we have identified two key ways that we can support apprentices throughout their educational journey:
- Learning Advocate: Each apprentice is assigned a Learning Advocate to support them throughout their apprenticeship journey. A Learning Advocate is a member of the Faith Technologies University team who acts as a point of contact for questions, tutoring and support throughout the apprenticeship program. Learning Advocates actively reach out to apprentices on a regular basis to ensure success, and the apprentice is encouraged to reach out to their Learning Advocate at any time with questions.
- Company-Issued Device: Our company invests in an electronic tablet for each apprentice to ensure their ability to complete training classes. Apprentices use these devices to access both virtual instructor-led and self-study classes. The tablets are also equipped with a variety of applications and tools that contribute to apprentice success not only in the classroom, but also in the course of day-to-day job duties. The investment in company-provided learning devices is yet another way that we continue to keep employee success top-of-mind.
Apprentices have been fully immersed in the virtual learning experience for eight months and during this time, they have embraced the changes, are successfully progressing through the program and have continued to learn and apply their knowledge. We are seeing apprentices complete classes more quickly, earning incentives for each class, and even graduating early following the self-paced training plan.