Apprenticeships and graduate training scheme


The majority of apprentices and graduates are appointed on a permanent basis after their placements with us. We are investing over half a million pounds over three years, from 2019, on our apprentice and graduate scheme. 

Earn while you learn

If you're eager to develop useful and relevant skills, and are brimming with fresh ideas, then an apprenticeship with us could be just the thing. As an apprentice you earn while you learn and receive extra benefits.

What you can expect

You will receive:

  • competitive salary, as well as additional staff benefits
  • hands-on experience, working alongside experienced professionals
  • the opportunity to gain job-specific skills
  • support to achieve a nationally recognised qualification (such as an NVQ) including time off for study
  • advice and guidance to develop your career.

At the end of your apprenticeship you may be offered the chance to stay in your role or use your skills in a new role in another department.

All apprenticeships include elements of on-the-job and off-the-job training, leading to industry recognised standards or qualifications. Some apprenticeships also require an assessment at the end of the programme to gauge the apprentice’s ability and competence in their job role.

Apprentice officeEntry requirements

  • Apprenticeships are available to anyone over the age of 16, living in England and have no upper age limit 
  • There will be different entry requirements depending on the industry, job role and apprenticeship level
  • Recent changes to the minimum English and maths requirements now mean that people with a learning difficulty or disability can now access a level 2 intermediate apprenticeship as long as they can achieve an entry level 3 qualification during their apprenticeship
  • As a Disability Confident Employer we will offer an interview to any applicant that declares they have a disability and meets the minimum criteria as defined by the employer. 

Who can apply?

  • Persons aged 16 or over

How do I apply?

We offer exciting apprenticeships in everything from gardening to business administration:

View our latest apprenticeship opportunities

Graduate scheme

We work in association with the National Graduate Development Programme to recruit graduates. The scheme seeks to attract highly talented, motivated and personally driven individuals who see a career working in and for local government as inspirational.

The scheme aims to develop individuals who will act as effective change agents and enablers in a council. The scheme is designed to help individuals realise their leadership potential in a vibrant and rapidly changing sector. The minimum entry requirement is a 2:2 degree, after which we measure candidates against eight key criteria.

In addition, we offer graduate training schemes in Planning, Environmental Health, Legal and Housing and Estate Surveying. Please see our Vacancies page for current graduate opportunities.

What our apprentices and graduates say

Don't just take our word for it, read what some of our past and present apprentices have to say...

Mike Griffiths

Mike Griffiths, Corporate Graduate

I decided to take part in the Local Government Association's National Graduate Development Programme to give me exposure to a number of departments within the Council. As part of this two-year programme, I will complete four six-month placements and there is a real likelihood of a permanent role at the end.

The focus is very much on me and what my interests are and the placements are agreed accordingly. Since joining in October 2019, I've worked in both Supported Housing and Housing Development. I've already contributed to a variety of projects, including co-ordinating the handover period of a council housing new build, working with architects and engineers on design concepts and participating in public consultations for council developments.

The move to Hemel Hempstead from Liverpool was initially somewhat daunting. However, Dacorum Borough Council is a really welcoming and friendly organisation and the community it serves are equally so. It already feels like home!

Dwain Daniel

Dwain Daniel, Housing Projects and Engagement Officer

I joined the Council in November 2013 as an apprentice. The first team I joined was the Empty Homes team. Shortly after that I began my studies (Housing Practices Level 3). The Council afforded me study days to complete my assignments as and when I needed them. This was a great help.

During this time, I moved on from the Empty Homes team to Strategic Housing. I spent roughly four months in various departments. Next, I moved into the Tenancy team, where I was given a patch to maintain (Tring). This was a great experience as I was doing the role of a Housing Officer whilst completing my studies at college.

After 18 months, I finished my course and continued to work in the Housing Tenancy team. Eventually, a position became available and I applied for this and was the successful candidate. I remained in the team until July 2019 when I took on a two-year secondment as a Housing Projects and Engagement Officer.

Heidi Carrington-Dunn

Heidi Carrington-Dunn, Human Resources Adviser

I was already employed by the Council in Central Admin and the opportunity came up to become an HR Trainee under the Apprenticeship Levy. I had always thought about pursuing a career in HR and working at the Council gave me the perfect start as I have been able to perform a variety of tasks, supporting the team and organisation.

Most of my learning is through on-the-job experience and building my confidence to deal with issues that may arise. I'm also earning money while working to get a qualification. I find the 20 per cent off-the-job study time invaluable to making sure my workload is completed and having a healthy work-life balance.

I'm now towards the end of completing my Level 3 and gaining a real-world understanding of the role. I've earned my position as part of the HR team and am now an HR Adviser - I'm well on my way to becoming fully qualified over the next few years and am excited at where this opportunity could lead.

Stephanie Bailey

Stephanie Bailey, Housing Projects and Engagement Officer

I've just started my apprenticeship course with Together Training, where I'm studying for a qualification through the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). This course will run for 18 months (19 September 2019 to 19 May 2021). At the end of the course, I hope to gain a qualification in CMI Level 3, Principles of Management and Leadership.

To meet the criteria of the course, I was required to have functional skills in maths, English and ICT - this is equivalent to a Level 2 or GCSE grade A-C. Unfortunately, I did not have the required grade in maths, so I'm retaking maths and plan to sit the exams in June 2020. I was disappointed at first, but Together Training have provided me with my own learning coach, and this has put my mind at ease. The course providers have also given me additional time to complete my maths and I can decide when is best for me to take my exams.

As part of the apprenticeship scheme, I'm required to do 20 per cent off-the-job training (OTJ), which is agreed with my line manager. I also provide evidence of additional learning through my skills, knowledge and behaviour, which I record as part of my future Development Action Plan. I then provide evidence of how this has improved my skills, knowledge and behaviours and record this as part of my personal development record (PDR) or continuing professional development (CPD). To ensure I'm doing 20 per cent OTJ training, I keep a log of all my activities and record these onto a Smart Assessor spreadsheet. To improve my understanding of each assignment, I attend a masterclass once a month at the Watford campus.

I'm only a few months into the course and already I've learnt so much, particularly about Emotional Intelligence. This has taught me how I can control my emotions in dealing with other people, without losing control of a situation. It has also taught me how I can maintain my professionalism at all times, which will enable me to become a successful manager.

More information

Find out more information about our apprenticeships in our frequently asked questions:

Expand all

  • What is an apprenticeship?

    An apprenticeship is a genuine job and you'll be employed from day one. Apprenticeship schemes combine practical training in a job with study. As an apprentice you will:

    • work alongside experienced staff
    • gain job-specific skills
    • earn a wage and receive benefits such as holiday pay
    • be given time for study related to your role (the equivalent of one day a week). 
  • What levels of apprenticeships are there?

    All apprenticeships include elements of on-the-job and off-the-job training, leading to industry recognised standards or qualifications. Some apprenticeships also require an assessment at the end of the programme to gauge the apprentice`s ability and competence in their job role.

    Apprenticeships qualifications
    Name  Level  Equivalent educational level
    Intermediate 5 GCSE passes at grade A* to C or 9 to 4 
    Advanced  3 2 A level passes/Level 3 diploma/International Baccalaureate
    Higher  4,5,6 and 7
    Foundation degree and above
    Degree  6 and 7 Bachelor's or Master's degree
  • Why should I consider an apprenticeship?

    Becoming an apprentice gives you the opportunity to earn while you learn. 

    • You will receive a real wage and benefits
    • Receive training in job-specific skills that employers want
    • Set yourself up for the future - according to research, apprentices enjoy marked salary increases when they complete their training, and those completing a higher apprenticeship could see increased earnings of an estimated £150,000 over their lifetime.*

    *Taken from the University Education - Is this the best route into employment? report carried out by the Centre for Economics and Business Research for the Association of Accounting Technicians - February 2013.

  • What can I earn as an apprentice?

    You will receive the Living Wage as a minimum salary. You will also benefit from a generous annual leave and pension provision, together with eligibility to many other Council benefits.

  • How long is an apprenticeship programme?

    Our programmes will depend on a number of factors, such as the level of the course and any specific learning needs that you have.

    Typically, an apprenticeship programme is between 12 and 36 months long.

  • How many hours per week will I work as an apprentice?

    Our programmes tend to be full time, 37 hours per week. However, this does not apply in every circumstance. The minimum duration of each apprenticeship is based on 30 hours a week, including any off-the-job training.

    The time spent on off-the-job training is 20 per cent and should be included as part of working hours. We will allow time to complete the apprenticeship within the working hours.

  • What are the entry requirements?

    Apprenticeships are available to anyone over the age of 16, living in England and have no upper age limit. There will be different entry requirements depending on the industry, job role and apprenticeship level. All our apprenticeship vacancies clearly state the entry requirements for the position advertised.

  • How will I receive training as an apprentice?

    We will allocate a training provider who will have a key role to play in: 

    • providing off-the-job training
    • assessing progress towards achieving your qualifications, and
    • supporting you generally during your apprenticeship.

    We will work very closely with the training provider to ensure that all apprentices receive:

    • an induction programme on starting
    • a detailed training plan (including on-the-job training)
    • regular progress reviews
    • opportunities to put into practice off-the-job learning so that they can achieve their qualifications/requirements of the apprenticeship
    • mentoring and general support throughout the apprenticeship.

    This will all be documented in a commitment statement, which forms part of the Apprenticeship Agreement. This is an individual learning plan that the training provider, ourselves and apprentice will all sign up to.

  • Do I need to have any relevant work experience?

    No, you may not need relevant work experience. However, you will need to meet the entry requirements for the vacancies advertised.

  • Where can I find advice and support for my apprenticeship application?

    If you need general help with your apprenticeship application, or professional advice on making the right choices, visit the National Careers Service website for a web-chat with an adviser, or call 0800 100 900.

    Specific queries regarding our apprenticeship programme can be emailed to Alternatively, call us on 01442 228000 and ask for Human Resources.

  • Can I apply if I have a disability?

    A Disability Confident Employer will generally offer an interview to any applicant that declares they have a disability and meets the minimum criteria as defined by the employer.