Apprenticeship Recruitment Success

Despite lockdown, Irwin Mitchell wanted to go ahead with their planned apprenticeship recruitment. Find out how Damar Training and Irwin Mitchell have worked together to make this happen.

Why did you decide to go ahead with your apprenticeship recruitment at this time?

Irwin Mitchell has a clear desire to support our Early Careers talent, as well as looking to the future. We still have opportunities for apprentices to join us, and recognise in the current climate, that it is even more important to provide these roles to maintain a core influx of talent for the future. 

How have you changed the recruitment process due to current circumstances?

Our recruitment process has always been done face to face so we have had to look at ways to adapt. We have worked closely with our Smart Working team to establish the most effective way for candidates to undertake our assessments virtually. There could potentially be technological difficulties in undertaking virtual assessments, but we have undertaken testing and offered support to the candidates to try to overcome these and the first couple of assessments have gone well.  Undertaking the assessments virtually ensures that candidates do not have to wait any longer for the outcome of their application during these difficult times.

How has Damar supported your apprenticeship recruitment?

Damar has been very quick to react to any changes we have made. They have offered support in coming up with solutions to the challenges encountered in the current climate and the best way to adapt our process. Their support in keeping in touch with candidates and keeping them engaged has been invaluable.

Are there any lessons learned or parts of the process that you will take forward?

We will have to see how the rest of the assessments go, but I think we have realised that not everything has to be done face to face. Going forward I think we will start to look at how parts, if not all, of the recruitment process can be done virtually.  We are keen to get feedback from the candidates following the assessments and will take on board any learnings.

Jack Scott, Recruitment Co-ordinator at Damar Training said: “It was important that Damar and Irwin Mitchell  embraced the changes that have been made to the recruitment process and communicated these to candidates in a timely manner. I called all of the candidates to talk them through the online assessment and what to expect, because I was conscious that it may seem a bit of a daunting experience. I also checked to see if this is something which they would be able to facilitate. So we have remained committed to providing candidates with a positive recruitment experience despite the circumstances.”

Kat Shawcross, Business Development Manager at Damar Training said: “Although some of our partner-employers have had to put recruitment on hold, it is great to see employers like Irwin Mitchell forging ahead, using innovative and creative ways to recruit new talent and offer opportunities to people in the area. We look forward to watching the partnership between Damar and Irwin Mitchell flourish as we continue to support them in providing quality apprenticeship opportunities moving forward.”