Trainees land a job ... and qualify too

McDonalds, Halifax. Pritpal Singh with staff Warren Morris, Andrew O'Brien, Jason Payne, Taryn Clarke and Maomi Hodgson.
McDonalds, Halifax. Pritpal Singh with staff Warren Morris, Andrew O'Brien, Jason Payne, Taryn Clarke and Maomi Hodgson.

A FLOURISHING apprenticeship scheme in hospitality is helping to plug the training gap left by the decline of manufacturing.

Since 2009, McDonald’s has trained thousands of apprenticeships, including 27 across Calderdale.

McDonald’s franchisee Pritpal Singh, of Hebden Bridge, runs three outlets in Halifax in the town centre, Salterhebble and Asda along with the Bailiff Bridge restaurant at Brighouse.

He has 24 in total across West Yorkshire which have accommodated more than 100 apprenticeships.

He said while training had always been available it was now structured into a nationally recognised qualification.

The eight to 12-month programme provides an NVQ level two apprenticeship in multi-task hospitality and includes an A-C equivalent in maths and English.

“Every element of a restaurant operation is covered,” said Mr Singh.

“Staff turnover has dropped over the last two or three years because people can see the natural progression opportunities.”

The four Halifax restaurants employ 200 people, meaning more than 10 per cent have gained the apprenticeship standard.

Warren Morris, 27, had no significant qualifications from school and was facing redundancy in his previous employment.

He was keen to find a new job that would give him access to qualifications and was taken on at Asda.

Mr Morris is now a shift manager and an apprenticeship training manager.

“The programme has given me a lot more knowledge and practical use of English and maths and I really enjoy my work,” he said.

Mr Singh said the programme was producing better skilled people, which was good for the business and customers.