Ellis Furniture is celebrating the recent success of two of its second year apprentices, Chris Mattimoe and Michael Holmes by awarding each with Love2Shop vouchers. Chris received a distinction and Michael received a merit for their second year practical and project work, which focused on the specialist machinery side of furniture making.
In conjunction with Leeds College of Building – the UK’s only specialist construction college – Ellis Furniture employs three apprentices every year. Each apprentice spends three years progressing through the scheme, learning the essential foundations of furniture making and gaining the skills required to operate specialised machinery. So successful is the apprenticeship operated by Ellis Furniture that several apprentices have secured awards from Leeds College of Building for the outstanding quality of their work.
Ellis Furniture says its apprenticeship scheme is as popular today as it was 120 years ago, with more than a quarter of current employees having joined the company as apprentices. The renowned manufacturer places quality craftmanship and attention to detail at the heart of its business philosophy and considers apprentices invaluable in achieving business goals.
During their third year, apprentices are trained for a permanent role in the company, an opportunity pursued by many. Fifty-six of the current 200-strong workforce began their career with Ellis Furniture as apprentices, and have taken on roles across the business from machinist to assembly and finishing. Many continue into long-term employment, remaining with the family business for many years. David Hughes, a former apprentice who recently retired, dedicated 50 years’ service to Ellis Furniture following successful completion of his apprenticeship. This fantastic retention rate plays a key role in the success of the scheme, with former apprentices nurturing the fresh, young talent and supporting the new members of the team as they progress through the scheme.
Ellis Furniture director Richard Ellis comments: “It is always wonderful to see our apprentices do well. Their success demonstrates that they are as passionate about furniture making as we are. These are the very people we want in our business in the future. We truly value the role our apprentices play in the continued success of our business. Through four generations of the Ellis family we have invested in our apprentice scheme, which continues to go from strength to strength and is as popular as ever.”
Tom Ellis adds: “More than a quarter of our team started with us as apprentices. To give such enthusiastic, young people a fantastic start with the opportunity to gain the skills required to carve out a lifelong career, is a real honour. In turn, we benefit from securing some incredibly promising young craftsmen who we nurture and train, enabling them to continue the production of Ellis Furniture products with care and outstanding attention to detail. We believe that apprenticeship schemes will continue to play a pivotal role in our business and many other businesses in the future.”