Employer Focus: Phil Deare Carpentry

Phil Deare Carpentry is a highly professional and respected carpentry firm which specialises in new build houses and developments. Since the firm opened its doors in 2014, it has grown to employ around 30 staff and works on major developments across the south west from David Wilson Homes, to Barratts, and Linden Homes. We caught up with company owner Phil Deare on site at David Wilson Homes in Tavistock to find out more about his business and its apprentices.

“We regularly enjoy repeat customers thanks to our reputation of delivering high standard and efficient work. Our work is varied and covers all aspects of carpentry from roofs to joist systems; and our apprentices get involved in all tasks.

“We find there is huge value in employing apprentices. They are able to help the qualified carpenters with tasks when an extra pair of hands is needed, and they also develop a qualified workforce for the future. Apprentices, once they complete, can fill the skills gap in areas where they lack carpenters – for example, in North Devon. Another benefit of hiring apprentices is that you are able to train them to fit in with your company practice so that they are confident workers once they qualify and can help to expand the business.

“I have enjoyed hiring apprentices and take on five or six a year as they have proved invaluable. One of our current apprentices, Cochise, has shown massive progression since he started here four months ago and is working above and beyond his level. He regularly completes tasks which you might expect in the next level of apprenticeship and he has a great eye for detail.

“We also have a good relationship with Skills Group – the team always recommends apprentices who would fit in well with our business. Skills Group also makes sure that the apprentices are prepared with the basics before they step foot on site, for example with health and safety knowledge and a CSCS card.

“My advice for other businesses hiring an apprentice would be to ensure the apprentice is enthusiastic, motivated and able to time-keep! I would also recommend giving a potential apprentice at least a week’s trial so you can be sure you’re employing the best person and equally so the apprentice can make sure that the company is right for them.”

I just wanted to say the biggest thank you to Vanessa, my trainer. You have made my journey so much easier, I don’t know what I would have done without you. You have been amazing and helped me to achieve my qualification. You’ve guided me through every step of the way, I really appreciate it, Vanessa, you have been my rock.

Katie Shorland, Level 2 Hairdressing

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!

Jaimee Benson, Level 2 Hairdressing

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!

Will Birch, Level 2 Bricklaying

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

Sam Collard, Level 2 Light Vehicle and Maintenance Repair

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.

Ben Freeman, Level 2 Carpentry

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!

Luke Kowalski, Teaching Assistant and former apprentice at Sir Robert Gefferys School