Plumber helps 'develop young workforce'

Release Date: 20 December 2016

For Shaun Bisset, owner of Ferry Plumbing & Heating Ltd in Dundee, taking on an apprentice is something that he always wanted to do. However, as a sole trader this can at times prove to be an expensive and time consuming process to find the right young person.

Ferry plumbing
Apprentice 16-year-old Shaun Berry (left) receiving his apprenticeship offer letter from Shaun Bisset.

Instead of the traditional advert in the paper, or online advertising, Shaun decided to take a different approach to recruitment, one which involved working very closely with Dundee & Angus College.

The inspiration for this different approach came from Shaun attending the Dundee & Angus Developing the Young Workforce Launch Event in September 2016 at the Space, Kingsway Campus, in Dundee.

The event included representatives of  various businesses, large and small, who all employed young people, describe the enormous benefits of taking on a young person.

One of the key themes to come out of the DYW Dundee & Angus Launch Event was working collaboratively with different agencies and partners to achieve common goals, most importantly to provide employment opportunities locally for young people.

Shaun took the opportunity at this event to start initial discussions with staff from Dundee & Angus College to help him source a young plumbing apprentice.

These initial conversations led to staff from D&A College’s Building Services Department recommending four current students as potential candidates.

It was decided that each of the four students would take part in a three-day working trial with Shaun, where he could work with each of the young people at close quarters to assess their attitude, their willingness to work hard and their ability to take instruction and learn quickly.

One of the key aspects for the employer was that the apprentice represented and embodied all of the qualities fitting of the image of the company as only the highest standards are accepted.

After the trial periods were complete, the successful candidate was Shaun Berry (16) from Dundee. Shaun really impressed in all aspects throughout his working interview and was delighted to be offered a full time apprenticeship with Ferry Plumbing & Heating Ltd.

Shaun explained that his grandad was a plumber and that he gained some experience of working with him from a young age and he wanted to follow in his grandad’s footsteps.

Shaun has being doing an excellent job so far and his drive and enthusiasm is making a real difference already to the productivity and efficiency of the business.

 “Working with Dundee & Angus College to recruit Shaun has been an excellent experience and I can’t thank them enough,” said Shaun Bisset.

“Being able to tap into their knowledge of the most suitable students was invaluable as it reduced the need for me to place expensive adverts, sift through countless CV’s and having to take valuable time away from work to interview candidates.

“Hopefully in the next couple of years I will be able to recruit another apprentice and I would definitely recommend this method of working with Dundee & Angus College to any small business considering recruiting a young person.”