We recently caught up with Keith Elliott on location at one of his newly completed projects (a to-die-for kitchen extension in Yelverton) to talk about apprenticeships and how they benefit the construction industry.
“Our business is focused on customer service and satisfaction, we are specialists in construction solutions across all projects, from house builds through to extensions, bathrooms and kitchens.
I followed my father into the construction industry, setting up my own company when I was 21, as my business grew, I took on my first assistant. It was then that I first looked into apprenticeships, so I could provide formal qualifications for my employee, I heard about Skills Group, got in touch and the rest is history”.
Over the past 12 years, Keith Elliott Construction has employed and trained over 17 apprentices, providing quality on-the-job training via a team of industry experts. Keith comments: “It’s a massive benefit for an apprentice to gain experience by shadowing a professional, they can and do ask a lot of questions, equipping them to one day become the expert on site”.
The construction industry is growing all the time, in the last four years there has been a five-fold increase in the number of homeowners choosing to remain in their property and carry out home improvements rather than moving on. Keith commented: “Apprentices are a massive benefit to the construction industry, it is growing all the time and is an attractive industry to join. We carry out a wide range of projects providing great learning opportunities”.
Looking at the fantastic finish of the kitchen extension we visited, it is no wonder Keith’s construction company is in high demand and has a constant stream of apprentices. His commitment to design, detail and finish is apparent in all of his projects.
I always struggled in school as I wasn’t very academic, so knew learning on the job would be a better option for me. I would find it difficult to get up for 9am but now I wake up and look forward to my day. I wanted to try a hair apprenticeship as I’ve always been interested in hairdressing, and by the end of the first week, I already loved it!
I have developed a range of new skills through work including the technical, industry skills required for the job, to personal development such as ensuring I am always on time. The biggest change since leaving school is adjusting to the independence you gain from earning a salary. My advice to anyone thinking of doing an apprenticeship would be find what you like doing, and go for it!
Since starting the apprenticeship, I’ve become far more confident. In a classroom, you only interact with your classmates, but through working you develop your people skills as you interact with customers on a daily basis. At school, you are closely monitored and parented, however I am now more independent and feel grown up
The most important thing I’ve learnt since leaving school is that there are other routes to success than just academia. I failed my GCSEs, as I never suited the school environment. Now though, I’m really enjoying my apprenticeship as I’ve discovered I learn more through hands-on practice.
I would just like to thank you and your team for all the amazing work they do, you have provided me with the most invaluable experience which has helped to pave the way of my future. The work you do for young people is incredible!