Interview Questions for Apprenticeships
How do I prepare for an Apprenticeship interview?
Whilst you can’t anticipate every single question you’ll be asked, there are ways to stay prepared no matter what questions are thrown your way.
Firstly, there’s a set of standard questions you’ll be asked and you can craft strong personalised responses. Secondly, if you take a look at the job description, and think of examples of the skills, experiences, and responsibilities you’ve demonstrated in the past, for each bullet point, there’ll be no surprises coming your way.
You can also learn about the different types of interviews and how to best approach them.
Did you know Travis Perkins plc offers Apprenticeships? Our Apprenticeships allow you to drive performance across your chosen business area and deliver projects that will positively impact what we do. Ready to apply? Here’s how you can prepare for your Apprenticeship interview:
What are Apprenticeship employers looking for?
Apprentices are essentially learning on the job so employers are looking for candidates who showcase a range of qualities and skills. For example, people who are enthusiastic and motivated would be a good fit as employers want Apprentices who genuinely are interested in the industry and role they are applying for. It also shows you are willing to learn and grow which is highly valued by employers.
Another skill that employers look for is adaptability as Apprentices gain exposure to various aspects of the industry, as well as a range of tasks. Being adaptable means you’ll be able to handle new scenarios easily, whether learning a new skill on the job or sitting in on a webinar.
If you are able to understand what your employer of choice is looking for, you can tailor your interview answers to showcase the qualities and skills they are searching for.
At Travis Perkins plc, we are looking for people who align with our culture and values, so if you don’t have experience with all the responsibilities of a job, we still encourage you to apply as we are a business that invests in the learning and development of our colleagues.
This leads us nicely to our first interview question:
Tell me about yourself
Now, this question can seem daunting at first but here’s a structure of all the points you should be making to give a strong impression and showcase your suitability for the Apprenticeship:
- A brief introduction of your name, and your career aspirations.
- Passion for the industry - Explain what sparked your interest in the field and why you are excited to learn and grow.
- Educational background - keep it short, sweet and relevant. How will your current education help you as an Apprentice? If you have any significant accomplishments that relate to your Apprenticeship, mention them here.
- Relevant experience - if you have any previous work experience, even if it is not directly related to your Apprenticeship, mention it briefly highlighting the transferable skills you can bring to the table.
- Skills - highlight the skills you possess that will help you excel in this role and how they will help you to succeed as an Apprentice and in your future career as well.
If you write one sentence for each of these points, you’ll have a strong ‘tell me about yourself’ answer that covers a lot of important information that your interviewer will be interested in. This question alone can spark conversation if your interviewer is curious to learn more about something you have mentioned.
Why am I interested in this Apprenticeship?
Think about the why - why have you chosen this Apprenticeship? Why this employer? Why this industry? All of these questions will help you to understand your motivations and inform your answers. Here are some example questions and what to include in your answers:
What excites you about this role?
For this question, focus on specific parts of the role that excite you and align with your career goals and interests. This is a chance to highlight specific responsibilities that you find particularly appealing and demonstrate that you have done your research. Also, mention how the opportunity to work in a real-world environment whilst learning new skills and knowledge is something that you value.
Why do you want to work for this employer?
Research the employer and their values and emphasise the values that resonate with you personally as this shows you would be a good cultural fit and are passionate about their mission.
For example, one of our values at Travis Perkins plc is we’re better together and this means we work together to share knowledge, learn and grow - making the most of who we are and what we do. If you were asked this question, you could say that this value resonates with you personally as you enjoy collaborating with people as it gives you the chance to learn and see how different people approach tasks.
What would make me a good Apprentice?
Here, you’ll want to focus on highlighting your strengths, skills and qualities that align with the requirements of the Apprenticeship you are applying for. Here’s how you can craft a great answer:
- Emphasise your eagerness to learn and contribute to the business - share how the Apprenticeship is an opportunity to learn in a real-world setting and apply what you learn by contributing to the team.
- Showcase your strong work ethic - emphasise your commitment to working hard and highlight any past experiences where you’ve demonstrated this.
- Share your long-term goals and how the Apprenticeship is a stepping stone to grow professionally and this is what will motivate you through the duration of the Apprenticeship programme.
Bonus tip: Questions you can ask at the end of your interview
This is not only a chance for your hiring manager and team to get to know you, but also a chance for you to get to know them. So at the end of your interview, it bodes well when candidates take an interest and show they are keen to know more about the role, team, and company.
Here are some questions you could ask:
- What is the company culture like?
- What is your favourite thing about working at the company?
- What does the ideal candidate for this role look like?
- Are there progression opportunities after the Apprenticeship?
- How do you prepare Apprentices for independent work?
Nail your Apprenticeship interview and good luck!
Remember, if you’ve got to the interview stage, you’ve already impressed your employer, now is the time to keep calm and show them why you would be the right person for your chosen Apprenticeship.
With these questions in mind, you can prepare solid interview answers that will highlight your skills, interests, and career aspirations and hopefully land you the Apprenticeship of your choice.
Our award-winning Apprenticeship programmes at Travis Perkins plc are designed to set you up for a successful career.
Kickstart your career and apply to our Apprenticeship programmes today.
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