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How Apprenticeships Work - Employed Pathway

What is an Apprenticeship? 

An Apprenticeship is a 'job' from day one which includes a combination of on and off-the-job training. Once you have decided upon your course of study, you should look for a placement provider.

As an Apprentice, you will be a new or existing employee, in a Northern Ireland-based company, working with experienced staff to learn and develop your skills. An apprentice receives ‘off-the-job’ training, usually on a day-release basis with the College, to work towards achieving vocational qualifications and Essential Skills qualifications (reading, writing, maths and ICT).

Belfast Met will meet with you and your employer to discuss your training needs and will then develop a training programme for you. We will be with you every step of the way throughout your apprenticeship to support you to ensure you achieve your apprenticeship.

Usually you are with the employer four days a week and with the College one day a week and your employer will pay you for your time spent with the College. Belfast Met works closely with Employers to deliver full on the job training where possible via our Trainer Assessor delivery allowing all aspects of the Apprenticeships framework delivered in your place of work.

Employ an Apprentice

Benefits to your business


  •  Increase productivity, improve competitiveness and develop a competent workforce
  •  Fill your skills gaps. Apprenticeships develop the specialist skills you need to keep pace with the latest technology and working practices – skills often not available in the job market.
  •  Secure a supply of people with the skills and qualities you need to replace an ageing workforce.
  •  Contribute to NI’s pool of qualified, certificated employees in your sector and help grow our economy and skills base.
  •  Build loyalty and reduce turnover.
  •  Create future managers who know your business.
  •  Motivate other staff to up skill.
  •  Show your company’s commitment to your team.

The employer’s role


  • Pay the apprentice as a permanent paid employee (minimum 21 contracted hours per week including day release/off-the-job training. Directed training must be paid as part of the participant’s contracted hours) from day one.
  • Pay the apprentice a wage commensurate with the industry rate for that job and in accordance with National Minimum Wage regulations
  • Support on-the-job training for the apprentice using a mentor or journey-man  to help develop knowledge and competence on the job
  • Support off-the-job learning by giving the apprentice appropriate time to attend College to enhance professional and technical knowledge.
  •  Comply with all relevant legal and contractual responsibilities regarding health and safety, and take steps to ensure equality of opportunity, regardless of community background, gender, marital status, disability, race, political opinion, sexual orientation, age, or dependents.
  •  Hold appropriate Public and Employers Liability Insurance

For further information:


Telephone: 028 9026 5219