From education to employment

Barnsley Businesses celebrate apprentices

L-R – Michelle Bailey, Managing Director at Active Response Security Services and Suzan McGladdery, Director of Business Development at Barnsley College.

Barnsley-based businesses attended a networking event on Thursday 7 March to hear how apprentices can support businesses development.

Delegates heard from Michelle Bailey, Managing Director at Active Response Security Services, who shared her personal experience from starting her career on the Youth Training Scheme (YTS) and how this led to her launching her own award-winning company in 2007. Suzan McGladdery, Director of Business Development at Barnsley College, provided an apprenticeship update which included sharing how employers can benefit from employing an apprentice and how Barnsley College can help them recruit an apprentice or up-skill an existing workforce.

Michelle spoke about her struggles at school and how this led to her starting her career working in an office environment where she gained skills and confidence by learning from her peers. Michelle’s career progressed and in 2007 she started her own business, Active Response Security Service.

Active Response Security Services has employed eight apprentices since 2010 and currently employs two Business Administration Apprentices and one Accountancy Apprentice.

Michelle said: “I know the YTS or the apprenticeship programme as it is known now can work – it provided me with the confidence to start my career and now I’m a business owner. I’m keen to give something back to the community.

“As an employer, I understand my business will have a greater chance of being successful if I’ve got the right team of people with the right skills. By employing apprentices I have the opportunity to mould someone with the skills my business needs whilst providing an opening for someone to start their career too.”

Suzan added: “This event was a fantastic opportunity for businesses within the area to find out what funding and recruitment and training support is available to them. As every business is unique, it’s important that they know bespoke support is available to develop their workforce and grow their business. 

“It was a pleasure to hear Michelle’s story. She spoke honestly about her experience on the YTS and how this shaped her into the successful business woman she is today.”

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