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Why does the NHS recruit apprentices?

NHSGGC are keen to ensure that we have an appropriately skilled workforce to meet current and future service demands, and one that represents the patient population we serve. Apprenticeships provide a mechanism for us to recruit, train and retain new employees aged 16-24 years. We recruit apprentices with the intention of moving them into permanent employment on successful completion of their apprenticeship.  While apprentices develop their knowledge and skills on the job, and gain nationally recognised qualifications, we hope that the apprenticeship is just the start of a much longer term career within the NHS.

Why choose an NHSGGC Modern Apprenticeship?

Modern Apprenticeships (MA) offer the opportunity to work and learn at the same time. By the end of the apprenticeship period apprentices have demonstrated that they have the knowledge and skills required for the job role and are competent and experienced workers. This approach of working and learning at the same time is enhanced by a formal Modern Apprenticeship Framework which ensures apprentices gain national recognition of their knowledge and skills.

Our trainees start on a minimum salary of the Scottish Living Wage (£9.50 per hour as of 2021) and have access to all the benefits available to NHS Staff. This includes 27 days paid annual leave, 8 paid public holidays per year and enrolment in the NHS Pension Scheme.

All trainees who successfully complete the NHSGGC Modern Apprenticeship Programme will be offered permanent employment within the organisation.   

We have established career pathways and development programmes within the organisation which support ongoing career development and  support employees to work towards higher level qualifications, to develop their skills and progress within the NHS in Scotland.

If for some reason trainees chose not to remain with us on completion of training then they leave us with recognised qualifications and training, work experience and references, and a real advantage over other applicants in an increasingly competitive graduate job market.

What are the qualifications and training offered ?

Some of the apprenticeships require apprentices to attend college. Engineers spend their first year of the programme in full-time college education and then go on to attend college one day per week in Years 2 & 3. Some other apprenticeships may require attendance one day per week to complete an academic qualification e.g. HNC (Life Sciences apprenticeships). There are also some apprenticeships that do not require any formal attendance at college e.g. Business Administration, although we often ask our training providers to deliver some additional training sessions if we think this is necessary.  

Current Activity

NHSGGC established a pilot apprenticeship programme in 2009 (14 apprentices) and since 2013 we have recruited more than 200 apprentices to work across a broad range of job roles using a variety of different apprenticeship frameworks.


If you would like to know more about  Apprenticeship Recruitment and the Frameworks available or are considering appointing an apprentice to your team please contact:

Laura McKie, Employability Lead:

Recognition of Service Support

The high standard of talent and achievement in our young apprentices is recognised each year at the Unison/Unite NHSGGC Modern Apprentice of the Year.