National Apprenticeship Week: TJ interviews AVADO’s Mark Creighton

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Written by Mark Creighton on 4 February 2020 in Interviews

Mark Creighton tells us why he’s championing apprenticeships as a great career path.

Reading time: 2 minutes

What are your hopes for National Apprenticeship Week this year?

We hope to see a shift in how businesses, educational bodies and parents value apprenticeships.

These programmes provide a wealth of opportunity to both individuals and businesses, including increased productivity and a more diverse workforce.

Our aim for National Apprenticeship Week should be to encourage a stronger conversation nationwide about how they are a great career path. 

Three years on from the levy, how do you think we are doing? Have people’s attitudes towards apprenticeships changed enough?

We’re confident we have made strong headway, but wider appreciation and awareness of apprenticeships needs to continue within institutional bodies, parents and businesses.

Through our research, we have seen a shift in parents and managers valuing apprenticeship programmes.

Findings show that 86% of parents believe apprenticeships are a good career option and 71% of managers expressed their belief in non-traditional qualifications.

86% of parents believe apprenticeships are a good career option

It’s great to see these groups showing support for alternative routes to traditional education as a successful career path.

What can the Government do to continue to raise awareness? What can L&D teams do?

It is important that the Government effectively communicates the value of apprenticeships.

Despite the large Government contributions made via the levy for apprenticeship programmes over the past three years, there appears to be no increase in awareness of apprenticeships as an alternative route to building new skills within UK organisation, as well as opening up powerful new career paths to existing employees.

The opportunity to further grow the role of apprenticeships lies with Government employers and apprenticeship providers working far more collaboratively.

What are we going to be talking about during next year’s National Apprenticeship Week?

Next year, I hope to see an even greater shift in positivity toward alternative education routes.

Ideally, we will see a much higher number of parents reporting their children are being advised on apprenticeships as a future career path by their schools and career advisory services.



In a nationwide survey released by AVADO this year, only half of parents in the UK reported that their children have received advice on apprenticeships.

This is disappointing when you consider that we want to offer the young people of the UK as many opportunities to enter the workplace as possible.

Guidance from the Government and educational bodies will be essential to increasing awareness for the next generation of employees, validating apprenticeships as a viable start to building their career.


About the interviewee

Mark Creighton is CEO of AVADO


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