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National Apprenticeship Week 2019

This week at EY we are joining the celebrations in support of National Apprenticeship Week – this year’s theme being ‘Blaze a trail’. This national moment provides us with a unique opportunity to bring together everyone passionate about apprenticeships to encourage more people to choose apprenticeships as a fast-track to a great career and business growth.

We asked some of our senior leaders to tell us why apprenticeships are important to EY. Here’s what they had to say:

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“The future of work is changing. And fast. Our apprenticeship programmes offer young people a real alternative to university. Our apprentices tell us that it gives them the opportunity to start work straight from school and earn money, without building student debt. It is also possible that they will get their qualifications in their chosen business area quicker than their peers who chose to go to university. What do we look for in people wanting to join the programme? We are looking for people who are digitally savvy, can bring innovation and disruption to our organisation and have a diverse range of experiences. We also want people who are authentic and will grab opportunities and think of their career as something they own, drive and excel at. So grab this opportunity today by reading ‘10 reasons not to wait’ from some of our apprentices and think about what a career at EY could offer you.”

Steve Varley, Chairman and Regional Managing Partner, EY UK&I


EY’s business will change profoundly over the next 10 years. New technologies, in particular, Artificial Intelligence (AI), will allow us to do what we do for our clients in a fraction of the time that we take today. We will also use technologies like AI and blockchain to develop new services and new businesses to add to what we do today. If we are to get the best from technology then we need new people; people who have grown up in a world of smart technology and know how best to use it.

That’s why apprenticeships are so attractive to EY. Apprentices can get on the fast track into our profession; we need apprentices who bring energy, curiosity and a desire to learn fast. In return we offer the chance to learn the digital skills we will need to transform our business and a fast start to a great career. I watched my own daughter go through her apprenticeship and saw how quickly she learned new work skills but also the kind of life skills that take students years longer to pick up – and all while earning a living and avoiding piling up huge debts!

Harry Gaskell, Chief Innovation Officer, EY UK&I


Here at EY, we want to play our part in helping to change the perception of apprenticeships. They can be a great option for students of all abilities and backgrounds, providing an opportunity to gain a qualification and valuable business experience while also earning a salary.

Apprenticeships help us broaden our talent pool and identify and attract more individuals with the strengths and potential we are looking for. In turn, it helps to diversify our workforce, reflecting our broad client base.

Over the past three years, we have tripled the number of Government-accredited approved apprenticeships that we offer. This has helped us to open up the profession to people from all backgrounds, including those who are keen to start work earlier.

Justine Campbell, Managing Partner for Talent, EY UK&I


I joined EY as an 18 year old Apprentice myself, going against my parents preference of University, but it didn’t take long for them to see that, for me, I had made the right decision and have never stopped learning since.

Today, young people have so many opportunities and career paths available to them. An apprenticeship at EY enables our students to build knowledge, confidence and all round employability skills whilst working with colleagues who are eager to pass on their own knowledge and experiences too. As our business continues to develop with advancements in technology, we require a much broader skill set to allow us to be innovators and deliver the best service to our clients. In line with this, our apprenticeship offering is developing further, as digital skills become ever more important. It’s an exciting time to be starting your career, giving you the opportunity to become a leader of the future- so why wait?

Laura Keen, UK&I Apprenticeship Leader


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