Lidl Northern Ireland is to offer its employees the opportunity to join its new, specially-designed apprenticeship programme.
Designed to upskill the existing workforce as part of Lidl’s commitment to investing in its people, all employees who successfully complete the programme will receive a recognised National Vocational Qualification (NVQ).
The new programme launch coincided with National Apprenticeship Week, which ran from February 3-9.
Apprentices have been selected from across all of Lidl’s 39 stores throughout Northern Ireland as well as the company’s headquarters and regional distribution centre in County Antrim.
Conor Boyle, Regional Director of Lidl Northern Ireland, said: “The majority of our employees are aged 34 or under and the Lidl apprenticeship programme aims to give our younger employees the chance to obtain a recognised National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) whilst receiving on-the-job training over a 12-month period.
“Not only will apprentices obtain a qualification, but the programme will provide employees with the necessary skills and experience to progress within the company.
“As Northern Ireland’s fastest-growing supermarket we know that our success is due in large part to the commitment and dedication of our team. That’s why we are continuing to invest in our people through initiatives such as our Apprenticeship Programme.
“We have had a huge response to the scheme and we wish our apprentices every success in their study and future careers with Lidl Northern Ireland.”
Open to employees aged 18-25 who have been in their position for less than one year, the apprenticeships offer training and development across a range of business areas such as retail, business administration and team leadership.
Working with external training providers, the programme consists of work-based learning which complements Lidl’s existing learning and development offering.
Abbie Meredith from the Lidl Banbridge store was recently selected for the apprenticeship programme. She said: “Having worked in the Lidl Banbridge store for the last four months, I knew that I wanted to progress within the company and develop my skills.
“I applied for the Lidl apprenticeship programme as it is a fantastic opportunity to upskill and gain wider exposure to different areas of the business, all while working towards achieving an NVQ.
The approach to blended learning and on-the-job training really appealed to me as it means I can continue working whilst investing in my future career.
“I’m delighted to have been selected for the programme and I’m looking forward to taking the first step in advancing my career with Lidl Northern Ireland.”
Lidl Northern Ireland is a big investor in its employees, who on average earn around 30 per cent more than the local retail average according to results of an independent report specially commissioned by Lidl Northern Ireland in 2019.
In recent years the company has developed a series of award-winning local programmes to support employee development and employment opportunities.
These include The Princes Trust ‘Get into Retail’ programme, a bursary scheme in partnership with Ulster University and Queen’s University, and the ‘Feed Your Mind’ degree programme in association with Ulster University and Irish Times Training.