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Traineeship opportunities

If you have left education feeling unsure of your next steps into education or work, you haven’t yet achieved the qualifications necessary for your goal, or if you don’t have the work experience desired, a traineeship could be a great alternative option to support you. Traineeships can also be a stepping stone to an apprenticeship.

What are traineeships?

A traineeship is a skills development programme with work experience for young people, which is customised to individual needs. It can serve as a progression route and pathway into apprenticeships or other form of paid employment. Some programmes may only be for 16 -18 year olds and some may be for 19 – 24 year olds, so it is worth clarifying this with the provider who is offering the programme.

How do they work?

Traineeships are focused on providing a high quality work experience placement, giving you the opportunity to obtain the skills and experience that employers are looking for.
The learning is free, and the employer may cover the cost of expenses like food and travel. The cost of any qualifications you complete during the traineeship may be covered, and there may be an apprenticeship or job opportunity at the end of the traineeship programme.

How long do they last?

They usually last less than six months but can range from six weeks to one year – again, this is entirely dependent on the support an individual learner may need.

What is included in a traineeship?

The first strand is the mandatory core content of a traineeship, and consists of three elements:

  • Work experience - to develop workplace skills that give you meaningful work experience. The training provider will do their best to find you a work placement in an area that you are interested e.g. construction, digital, engineering, hospitality, care, to name a few.
  • Work preparation training - to prepare you with the Skills for Working Life in a particular sector as well as Employability Skills covering areas like CV writing, interview preparation, job search and inter-personal skills.
  • English and maths Functional Skills and digital skills if required.


The second strand is a flexible element such as a vocational qualification that supports the occupation you are interested in, for example, this could be a Food Safety Course for working in the hospitality sector.

Who is eligible to apply for a traineeship?

You can apply for a traineeship if you’re eligible to work in England, have little or no work experience, and are aged 16 to 24 - or 25 with an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan, and qualified to L3 (A Level equivalent) or below.

What are the benefits?

There are many benefits to traineeships, including:

  • Training to prepare you for work, including CV writing.
  • Support to improve your English, Maths and digital skills if needed.
  • Sector focused vocational learning to help prepare you for an apprenticeship or job.
  • A high quality work placement of at least 70 hours.
  • An interview for an apprenticeship or job if available, or an exit interview with feedback.
  • Programmes can be tailored to meet your needs and prepare you for what local businesses are looking for.

Where do I find traineeship vacancies?

You can find traineeship vacancies:

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