Ethan and Archie Briant are just two of the eight apprentices currently recruited in London, which has the highest number of apprentices in the company. London presents a wealth of opportunities for the construction industry and demands for a skilled workforce is particularly high.

Shaun Byron, Regional Director for London, who himself started as an apprentice 16 years ago, is keen to raise the next generation of apprentices in London. “We used to aim for two apprentices per depot per year. At least half of them will stay on at WysePower so I decided that we should recruit more to make sure our depot always had nice home-grown talent.

“These two lads [Ethan and Archie] only know the WysePower way. Once they’ve finished their apprenticeships, they’ll have the skills that we need.”

Being an apprentice at WysePower

Ethan, now in his final year, secured an Electrical Apprenticeship with WysePower through Barking and Dagenham College and had the opportunity to work on the Google HQ project at King’s Cross. So, what attracted Ethan to work for WysePower?

“A lot of the work was in and around Central London, which meant there were big opportunities with WysePower,” says Ethan. “They work on a lot of high-end projects, so it’s been great gaining valuable experience and knowledge of the sites and the work involved.”

He encouraged his younger brother Archie to apply for the same apprenticeship. Archie is now in his second year and thriving in his role. “He’s given me lots of advice,” says Archie. “His experience has helped me to understand what I need to do.”

Electrical apprenticeships usually take three to four years to complete, leading to an NVQ qualification. Both Ethan and Archie chose to do an apprenticeship as they could study part-time while training. “It’s more hands-on and I enjoy learning on the job,” says Ethan. “It’s also a quicker way of getting my qualifications and achieving my goal to be a professional electrician.”

One of my favourite things is at the end of a job when we turn on the power and all the lights come on and we know that everything works. It’s really rewarding seeing all the hard work come together.

WysePower's London Apprentices at work

During their time at WysePower, apprentices get hands-on experience on site, while being monitored by qualified electricians for their practical work and being supported by their managers to get their college work done.

A typical day for both Ethan and Archie would involve getting on to site bright and early and meeting their site manager for a briefing. Once they’ve been appointed their tasks, they get to work – typical jobs include wiring lighting and cable pulling. When their tasks are complete, they check in with their managers to make sure everything has been done satisfactorily.

Ethan adds: “One of my favourite things is at the end of a job when we turn on the power and the all the lights come on and we know that everything works. It’s really rewarding seeing all the hard work come together.”

Teamwork makes the dream work

“It’s great working with the WysePower team, they’re always super helpful,” comments Ethan. “Whenever I needed extra days at college, there were no questions asked, and if there’s an issue they’re always on hand and will get it resolved as quickly as possible.” Archie agrees.

“The managers are very helpful. If there are problems or if we need anything, they’re very quick to sort everything out. The electricians are very attentive, they want you to do your best and succeed, so you learn a lot.

“I’ve worked on private jobs with my brother and the electricians don’t really help you but with Wysepower it’s a lot different. They know you’re going be the next generation and they want you to become the best that you can.”

Archie also says that working with WysePower has improved his confidence. “Before, I found it hard to work independently, but since working with WysePower that’s changed. They give you confidence in yourself. They’ll give you jobs, and you just got to crack on and figure out problems – it’s good for building character.”

With a few years’ experience under his belt, does Ethan have any advice for those starting their apprenticeship? “I would say stick with it. It can be tough at times and involves lots of hard work, but it pays off in the end. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions. There’s no such thing as a stupid question because everyone’s been there, and they know what it’s like starting out.”

Do you want to know more about apprenticeships at WysePower? Visit our careers page for more information.