Finding and training your future stars

Apprentices reaping rewards for Jervis & Partners

Local accountants Jervis & Partners who are one of the oldest accountancy practices in Northamptonshire, are currently experiencing an unprecedented peri- od of growth. As a result, they are making great use of the government Apprenticeship scheme to help grow and train their workforce.

Jervis now have seven members of staff training through Starting Off on Apprenticeship schemes, six of them studying the AAT qualification and one new member of staff, who has recently joined their back-office team, studying Business & Administration.

What works for Jervis & Partners is seeing their Apprentices develop their skills alongside studying and being able to put into practise what they have learnt in the classroom. The AAT is an immensely practical qualification which ensures students have learnt the fundamental basics of bookkeeping be- fore moving onto more challenging accounting principles such as preparing accounts, indirect tax and costing. This is a perfect model for Jervis & Partners to be able to progress their Apprentices into different aspects of the business and utilise their new-found skills and interests.

The students at Jervis & Partners are able to sup- port each other in their studies and are proving a real asset to the business. Nigel Thomas one of the partners, sees the benefits of the Apprentices grow- ing with the business “which ensures continuity for both staff and clients and really helps with planning future workloads”.

Two of Jervis’ Apprentices are now on their AAT Level 4 qualifications, but both have achieved this through very different routes. Louisa Shaw was one of Jervis’ first members of staff to study AAT under the Apprenticeship scheme and started her Level 2 back in 2014. The flexibility of AAT has helped her continue her studies whilst starting a family. Louisa was able to take a break after her Level 3 qualifica- tion and has now picked up Level 4 on her return from maternity leave.

Olivia Fletcher studied her first AAT levels on- line before starting work for Jervis last year. She now really appreciates the classroom support and flexi- bility offered by Starting Off and Jervis for her Level 4. “Having the support from tutors and the staff at Starting Off as well as being able to study during the day has made a big impact on my progress with this qualification which at this level really relates to what I am now doing at work”.

Indeed, one of the firm’s partners, Neil Picton, knows at first hand the benefits of learning on-the- job, having joined Jervis in 1985 on what was then known as the ‘YTS’ (Youth Training Scheme), one of the first government sponsored vocational training programmes. Neil went on to train as a chartered accountant with the firm, becoming a partner in 2000.