What are traineeships?

Traineeships are a great step in education if you happen to be struggling to get on the job ladder.

  • Are you aged 16 to 24?
  • Do you have little or no work experience?
  • Are you struggling to get an apprenticeship?
  • Are you qualified below level 3? (level 3 is A-levels or equivalent)

If you answered YES to these questions then a traineeship could be your ideal solution.

Why should I take a traineeship?

They are a stepping stone into apprenticeships and the world of work and are really there to help you kick-start and progress your career.

You will need to be out of work or working less than 16 hours a week at the moment to apply for one.

Your traineeship which will last anywhere from 6 weeks to 6 months.

The actual length of the traineeships depends on the training and skills you need to develop personally.

This is great because it means the course is tailored specifically around you. This traineeship course will be with a local training provider.

During the traineeships you will learn all about team working, time keeping, interview skills, writing CVs and job searching (i.e. work preparation training), brush up on your English and Maths skills and undertake a work experience placement of  at least 100 hours with a local employer. 

At the end of your traineeship if your work experience employer has an apprenticeship or job vacancy, you are guaranteed an interview for this.

In fact a recent national evaluation of traineeships showed that 84% of employers had offered trainees an interview at the end of their traineeship and four out of five trainees said that the support they’d received during their work preparation training had helped to improve their job search (source: UK government traineeships evaluation).

What is the difference between an apprenticeship and a traineeship?

The difference between a traineeship and an apprenticeship is that a traineeship can be either a full-time or part-time employment based training arrangement, usually for around 12 months (apprenticeships usually last for three to four years) and is generally in a non-trade related area.

What are the benefits of a traineeship?

You will gain real life work experience with a local employer which should help you in securing a job or a place on an apprenticeship.

Many employers who offer traineeships also offer paid apprenticeships and if you’re successful in your traineeship, this should stand you in very good stead to gain the apprenticeship.  

You’ll have an extra qualification to add to your CV and new skills and experience to help you gain a job or apprenticeship. 

Most employers value English and Maths skills as essential to the jobs they offer, so this is a great way to improve your skills in this area. 

How much does a traineeship cost?

The good news is, it will cost you nothing as the government fully funds this training. You may also be able to claim back travel and meal expenses through a scheme known as the 16-19 Bursary Fund. 

If you’re already receiving benefits as you’re out of work or on very low wages, it’s best to check with your local Jobcentre Plus to ensure that the traineeship won’t affect your benefit claims. 

How do I apply for a traineeship?

You can search ‘find a traineeship’ that provides details of all available traineeships near where you live and nationally. For more information please visit the national traineeships website.

Don’t forget that the National Careers Service can also provide career advice, guidance and support for you on traineeships.

Further information

For more about traineeships and apprenticeships, please see: