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Waterside: Advanced Apprenticeships for Industry

Many companies today are dealing with ageing workforces and skills shortages. Waterside is a specialist provider of advanced apprenticeships for industry, helping develop the next generation of engineers, process operators and science technicians for industrial firms across the North West. Our assessor and training teams are highly experienced in their fields. They constantly push our apprentices to achieve the highest standards of competence, in order to become valuable members of your workforce.

The main benefits of our apprenticeship programmes are:

  • We incorporate additional technical training that goes beyond standard apprenticeship frameworks. The extra training can be tailored to suit your company.
  • We have strong success rates and almost all our apprentices go on to full time employment with their sponsoring employers.
  • You will have highly skilled individuals on completion of the apprenticeship, specifically trained with the core skills required by your business.
  • We invest in the personal development of the apprentices, so that they gain transferable skills to make them valuable members of your workforce
  • Our review system operates every four weeks or better, so that we very closely monitor and guide the apprentices in their development.
  • We are passionate about electrical and mechanical engineering, two of the fundamental building blocks of industry and our particular fields of expertise. 

What programmes are available?

Waterside focusses on Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Process Manufacturing and Engineering Design apprenticeships.  Since the introduction of new standards in 2017, we have selected a number of core programmes that match these four areas.  These include Science Industries Maintenance Technician, Engineering Design and Draughtsperson, and Maintenance and Operations Engineering Technician.

For more information about the apprenticeships we operate, see Apprenticeship Programmes

How do I find an apprentice?

At Waterside we carry out recruitment and selection for each specific vacancy. We carry out targeted advertising and post vacancies on relevant websites including the National Apprenticeship Service. We also work with schools to raise awareness of the great opportunities in engineering and industry. Our selection process incorporates initial application, multiple aptitude tests and a first interview before we put forward candidates for final interview with an employer. We put strong emphasis on finding the right individuals for your company from the very start, so that both the apprentices and your company can get maximum benefit from the program.

apprentice signature
Waterside apprentices go through an extended recruitment process in order to get selected

Do I need to employ the apprentice?

Yes, under the new apprenticeship systems introduced in 2017, employers will have to employ the apprentice.  Waterside has been able to offer an employment service until now so that employers could avoid increasing headcount.  We may re-introduce this service in the future once the new systems are fully implemented, however from 2017 it will not be possible for Waterside to employ apprentices on behalf of sponsor companies.

How much will it cost?

Under the new levy system, the cost of apprenticeships will not be fixed, although they will be capped depending on their funding bands.  Employers who pay the levy will be able to use this levy money with Waterside.  Our programmes and service go far beyond the minimum requirements for apprenticeships, with a clear aim of attracting the best individuals as apprentices, and delivering high quality in-depth industrial training for our client employers.  We are happy to discuss the cost of apprenticeships depending on your business needs. 

How do I find out more?

If you are interested in engineering or manufacturing apprenticeships, please contact Kathryn Kirby to discuss your requirements further at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or telephone 01744 616837.


Also take a look at some of our blog articles:

Apprenticeship changes in 2017

Congratulations to our first year apprentices

Mayor attends Engineering Apprenticeship open day

Gaining commitment to a successful apprenticeship

"Don't tar all apprenticeships with the same brush"

A rocketing start for our new Waterside apprentices!




Walkers Snack Foods (PepsiCo International) - Paul Gwyther

Pepsico International manufactures and offers a range of popular snacks, including Walkers potato crisps, Walkers Extra Crunchy, Quavers and Monster Munch.

Paul Gwyther, said "For our business to be productive we need a flexible workforce to run our plant and by taking on apprentices we can mould them to our business, hence our need to develop and invest in our future workforce to secure leaders for the future."

"After speaking with Waterside, an apprenticeship scheme seemed to be an area where we could develop and harness fresh new talent.  We looked at alternative suppliers and after a rigorous selection process we opted to use Waterside as they offered more than just an apprenticeship service, they also offered the guidance, advice and softer skills training; tailoring the programme to the requirements of our business needs.  They understand our requirements.  Our engineering manager was familiar with the Waterside process as a previous apprentice of the Waterside scheme.  For this reason we knew the process was tried and tested.  We have also undertaken technical training to up-skill our workforce, which our employees have given excellent feedback and we have been very happy with the service provided."

"This was the first time we had gone through developing an apprenticeship scheme and Waterside helped us with all the aspects, walking us through the process from assisting with our recruitment and selection process giving us advice and guidance, recruiting exactly the right people we need for our business, they understood our requirements and we have commenced our programme and our apprentices are now successful settling into their training at Waterside."

"I would recommend the Waterside method to any business that wants to safeguard its future skills base as they can give you the direction and assistance you need, you are not alone in setting up such as system and the quality of the people we have obtained is beyond comparison and is of a far higher value to the company."

Paul Gwyther
Organisational Capability Coordinator
Walkers Snack Foods (PepsiCo International)




H.J.Heinz Company Ltd - Simon Magleave

"For over 40 years Heinz has been committed to an apprenticeship scheme at its Kitt Green factory to guarantee that the engineering skills needed to maintain the site are available long term. We want to provide the best possible training to ensure we develop engineers with greatest capability and can do attitude.

We’re always looking for ways to improve the quality of training that the apprentice programme provides and we saw the partnership with Waterside as an opportunity to improve the learning experience. We’ve worked with Waterside now for around four years and in that time have built a close relationship, and with it confidence in the quality of services that they offer. With up to 30 apprentices within the programme at any one time it is difficult to be as close to their progress as we’d like to be. Working with Waterside gives us this insight for each apprentice and enables us to respond more quickly to potential challenges. We also benefit from the experience of the team at Waterside and the support that they offer our apprentices throughout the programme.

Having this close relationship has also allowed us to explore additional training courses to those within the standard apprentice framework. Waterside has worked with us to develop tailored training solutions to meet some of our more specific needs. This flexibility has allowed us to improve the quality and focus of our training programme over the last few years."

Simon Magleave
Maintenance Development Manager
Site Engineering
H.J.Heinz Company Ltd



NSG Group (Pilkington) - Gary Charlton

NSG Group has major Manufacturing Centres based in St Helens and Lathom and employs around 3,000 people across the UK.  Activities range from the manufacture of float/rolled glass to glass processing and merchanting, automotive original equipment (OE) and automotive glass replacement (AGR) manufacture and are among the most modern manufacturing techniques and environments in Europe being at the forefront of new product technology. 

Gary says "Pilkington’s philosophy of ‘best practice’ means that its employees need to be flexible, well rounded and highly skilled in its production, engineering and maintenance units.  We believe that apprentices are the best way forward to ensure that we have sufficient numbers of highly skilled workers for the future so we are able to develop the new talent we need for our business."

"Waterside’s selection process identifies the right candidates we require for our business in Engineering and Production and they ensure we have the right qualities in terms of attitude, flexibility and self motivation.  We have the confidence in the people running the programme and in the quality of the apprentices we obtain.  The formula is tried and tested and the structure really works for us.  Many apprentices who have since completed their training have progressed into senior positions within our business."

"Waterside manages the apprentice process and provides detailed progress reports removing the hassle and time consuming process that can be inherited with apprenticeship programmes. We believe that using Waterside gives us a greater degree of independence as sponsors ensuring we get the right requirements for our business.   We have considered alternatives but they don’t have the knowledge or mind set that Waterside has and Waterside’s management thinks like we do creating and developing the right people we need for our future business needs.  We will continue to use Waterside for Apprentice training as the benefits we receive are greater than the cheaper alternatives."

Gary Charlton
Managing Director, Building Products UK Upstream
NSG Group (Pilkington)

Please call 01744 616 837 or use the Contact Us form for more details