GRUNDFOS is doubling up at its Sunderland factory.
The engineering firm, which employs 180 people at its Castletown site, usually takes on two engineering apprentices a year.
This year, however, it has taken on four – two in the engineering and maintenance side of the business, and two in the commercial and operations side.
HR and training officer Rachael Fletcher said the apprenticeship scheme was something the company took very seriously.
She said: “We work with Sunderland College, New College Durham and Sunderland Engineering Training Association (SETA), on pre-assessing candidates for the scheme.
“They then forward us candidates for interview.
“Our engineering apprentices spend five days a week with SETA to start with and are then gradually integrated into the Castletown workforce. Their course is four years long.
“The commercial and operational apprentices are based at Grundfos and attend Sunderland College a day a week. Their course is for two years.”
“We’ve introduced a new mentorship scheme for the apprentices this year and it’s working really well.
Each apprentice is assigned a specially-trained Grundfos employee as their first point of contact for career advice, any college or training issues or any other problem.”
“We believe apprentices get the best of both worlds – they’re learning skills which will help them into full-time employment, but at the same time they’re earning.”