Meet the apprentice: Hovis

By James Ridler contact

- Last updated on GMT

Bret Hill (left) and Pete Hill discuss their experiences with Hovis' apprenticeship programme
Bret Hill (left) and Pete Hill discuss their experiences with Hovis' apprenticeship programme
Providing a thorough experience of the manufacturing process through hands-on training in the industry is key to moulding highly skilled apprentices at Hovis, according to engineering apprentice Bret Hill and human resources director Pete Hill.

The apprentice: Bret Hill

I always wanted to do an apprenticeship, so when a friend recommended the Hovis apprenticeship, Level 3 Diploma in Food and Drink Engineering Maintenance, I applied straight away because it ticked all the boxes for me. It was an opportunity to learn about something I’m interested in – the food and drink industry – while also working in a really supportive environment.

The apprenticeship covers all sorts of things, from fabrication to inspection maintenance and materials science. I love that I can learn so many things under one roof and, because of the variety, no two days are the same, which makes it even more interesting. Even though I’m not halfway through the course yet, I can’t believe how much I’ve already learnt.

I won one of the College Outstanding Learning Success (COLS) awards last December where I beat all other apprentices at Kirklees College’s Process Manufacturing Centre to the award. That was definitely my proudest achievement as an apprentice so far. Once I’ve completed the apprenticeship, my eventual goal is to move into a supervisory or management role at Hovis.

The employer: Pete Hill

Bret is an excellent example of the value of apprenticeship schemes. These schemes enable Hovis to find individuals with the right skills and mindset for the job. It also provides a platform for them to trial the working environment while surrounded by a strong support network. Bret has been making the most of his time at Hovis and the COLS award is testament to that.

At Hovis, our apprenticeship programmes run for a period of between 13 months (Logistics - LGV Level 2) and four years (Engineering - Food and Drink Engineering Maintenance Level 3).

All our apprenticeships combine study-focused training, under the guidance of a carefully selected apprentice provider, with practical work at our sites, led by a company mentor. So, a Hovis apprentice gains a thorough insight into various aspects of our business.

The apprenticeship schemes are a central component of our succession plans in key departments. It is the combination of knowledge, skills and behaviours gained through the schemes that provides our apprentices with such a good foundation for future success at Hovis.

If your have an apprenticeship story you want to tell, please contact James Ridler​.

Related topics: Bakery, People & Skills

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