Traineeships are a win-win for Halfords

“Thanks to Skills Training UK, the Traineeships are a great win-win. Not only does the candidate get great experience and the chance to see what it’s like to work for us, with an opportunity to move into a permanent role, we also see greater loyalty and, as a result, we have greatly improved our retention rate.”

Marsha Myles, Apprenticeship & Traineeship Manager, Halfords

Halfords is part of the Halfords Group PLC. It is one of the largest British retailers for car parts, car enhancement, camping, and bicycles in the UK and Ireland and was founded in 1892.

The Traineeship programme has become an established and essential part of Halfords’ approach to recruiting young people. It offers opportunities to successful candidates to progress to an Apprenticeship and a permanent job and ensures Halfords has a regular intake of loyal staff.

As Halfords’ Traineeships partner in London, the South East and the Black Country, Skills Training UK is responsible for sourcing and pre-assessing candidates as well as managing their learning programme. The young people who Halfords selects are initially coached over a three-week period by Skills Training UK, working towards qualifi cations in Retail (Level 1), Customer Service (Level 2), and English and Maths at Level 1 or 2.

Personal development and employability skills, including creativity and teamwork, are developed through an ‘enterprise challenge’ to design the bike of the future. The futuristic designs are developed, built and pitched by trainees to Halfords’ Store Managers before work placements begin.

The work placements are for three days each week over four weeks and trainees continue their learning at Skills Training UK on the other two days, completing their qualifications and perfecting their interview and presentation techniques.

After interviews with their Halfords’ Managers, successful learners are offered a relevant Apprenticeship, or if there isn’t an available position, they join a ‘talent pool’ for when a position becomes available at a store. All the trainees benefit from work experience, new qualifications and a Halfords’ reference and any young person who doesn’t secure a position with Halfords receives on-going support to identify an alternative progression route to build their career.

“We only take unemployed or those not in education or training, so it’s also a way that Halfords gives back to the local community.”

Marsha Myles, Apprenticeship & Traineeship Manager, Halfords


Trainee case study


Kai Downie, 18, Halfords Trainee

Kai left college without any qualifications, however being determined and wanting to better himself he called Skills Training UK to see if there was anything suitable for him.

Kai says: “I leapt at the chance of the Halfords’ traineeship as I love bikes and fixing things – the idea was instantly sold to me. From the beginning I knew I wanted to get a career out of this and hopefully within 5 years I will reach a managerial position.

“Skills Training UK have helped me through several tough times and the staff here are amazing with people my age. I would love to be able to come back to Skills Training UK later on in life and hopefully inspire young adults to really get out there and get experience.”

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