Ask anyone what makes a business thrive and the answer invariably relates to its people. So how do you attract the right individuals to ensure your organisation succeeds? For business services group AAB the answer lies in a fresh and collaborative approach to recruiting new talent…
AAB has long offered opportunities for school pupils and graduates. These include work experience, apprenticeships, internships, student placements and graduate programmes. One common theme prevails: a firm focus on creating the best possible environment for people to flourish. New recruits spend their first year settling in to working life before they start studying for professional qualifications. Each trainee is also assigned a workplace mentor and receives peer support throughout their apprenticeship.
Qualities over qualifications
AAB’s people qualities – expertise, enthusiasm, commitment, involvement, teamwork and flexibility – underpin everything the business stands for. The recruitment process very much reflects this: at apprenticeship level the requirement for academic qualifications has been replaced by a more skills-focused and attitude-based application form, followed by a video submission and in-person interview. At each stage, the goal is to get to know one another in a supportive yet professional way.
How did you hear about us?
Making young people aware of the different routes into a career in financial services – and dispelling some of the myths and stereotypes – is an ongoing process. AAB works in partnership with its local Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) groups, who facilitate connections between employers and young people. Keen to pitch their 2023 apprenticeship recruitment campaign correctly, the People and Culture team liaised closely with DYW North East throughout. DYW North East were able to give feedback on promotional materials and share these with senior pupils in local secondary schools. They also provided input to the format of an apprenticeship awareness webinar and a follow-up in-person event for young people, their parents and carers.
Attention to detail
Little things make a big difference. Current AAB trainees played a big part in both the online webinar and in-person apprenticeship awareness evening, as they were felt to be relatable role models for the young people who were attending. The webinar featured a fun quiz with Amazon vouchers as prizes, while the in-person event included refreshments that were geared towards the teenage appetite.
Outwith AAB’s apprenticeship recruitment campaigns, team members provide ongoing support to local youngsters by participating in mock interviews, delivering sector awareness sessions and attending school career fairs. Not only does this help to raise awareness of the business, these activities provide development opportunities for staff and contribute towards AAB’s ESG goals. The business has recently cemented its commitment by joining the Young Person’s Guarantee, a Scottish Government initiative designed to bring together employers, partners and young people. This is an organisation that lives up to its online promise: “At AAB our approach is different, and our success is down to one thing – our people.”
Further information about student and graduate career opportunities at AAB is available here.
Find out more about the Young Person’s Guarantee – and the benefits of joining – here.