Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water’s Director of Human Resources, Linda Williams, has been highlighting the importance of apprenticeships to the company during National Apprenticeships Week.
The company’s scheme is currently training 30 people in a wide variety of roles, ranging from instrumentation technicians to mechanical fitters and electricians. They will join a workforce of over 2000 in Wales’ fourth largest company.
The apprenticeship schemes will last four years and Welsh Water have apprentices located across Wales – from Anglesey to Penarth, and from Wrexham to Haverfordwest. Apprentices spend three days a week in the workplace and two days at a local college including Dolgellau and Deeside.
Welsh Water’s Director of Human Resources, Linda Williams, said; “The apprenticeship training route offers great long term benefits to the company and to individuals taking part in the scheme. Many of the skills needed at Dŵr Cymru Welsh Water are specialist and are developed over a number of years. Apprenticeships are therefore a vital part of our business, ensuring that these specialist skills are passed on and retained within the company for years to come.
Welsh Water offers great career prospects to apprentices in a company that is unique in the water industry. As a not-for-profit organisation, we focus solely on doing our best for customers and the environment. Our apprentices are playing a vital role in ensuring that we continue to provide the very best service for our customers as well as helping to deliver the £1.5billion investment programme planned on our water and sewerage networks between 2010 and 2015.”
Kirstie Davies, 21 from Pontypridd, is one of Welsh Water’s Mechanical Apprentices; “I previously worked in catering so starting an apprenticeship as a Mechanical Engineer was a pretty big change. I applied to the Welsh Water apprenticeship scheme after receiving information from Careers Wales.
“I’m based at Llwynon Water treatment works near Merthyr, but I cover a wide area including the valleys and Cardiff. The job is very hands on and my days can vary hugely, from carrying out planned maintenance on water pumps to attending sites to help out with urgent mechanical repairs.
“It’s great to be able to learn whilst working. It’s really satisfying to know that the work I’m doing will help keep the water flowing to so many people, including my own community in Pontypridd.”
The Deputy Minister for Skills, Jeff Cuthbert said; “Apprenticeships are at the heart of business effectiveness. They increase the skill set of the workforce and make Wales a more attractive place with which to do business. This is why we strongly believe in apprentices and have a number of programmes in place to support them.
“I would love to see more businesses taking on apprentices and I hope that events taking place throughout Wales during Apprenticeship Week will raise the profile and esteem of Apprenticeship programmes.”
Welsh Water is currently preparing to open the recruitment process for new apprentices this year. Applications will open in April and people can pre-register their interest for the scheme by emailing email@example.com