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BT Wales Director Pays Tribute to Apprentices at the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru


BT Wales director paid tribute to the contribution of apprentices to the business as the company collected a major honour at the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru.

After being named Macro Employer of the Year at this year’s awards ceremony, held at Venue Cymru, Llandudno on October 20, Alwen Williams said:

“We are absolutely delighted to win this award. We have been running an apprenticeship programme at BT Wales for 50 years and continue to evolve in our approach to enhance the skills and knowledge of our workforce.

“A lot of people have worked really hard to make it happen, but most of all I would like to thank the apprentices for their contribution and commitment to the business.”

The awards ceremony brought together the cream of learners, employers and training providers across Wales, who had excelled in contributing to the development of the Welsh Government’s Traineeships, Jobs Growth Wales and Apprenticeship programmes. The Apprenticeship Programme is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.

Thirty-three star learners, employers and learning providers involved in the delivery of a range of successful skills programmes across Wales were shortlisted for the prestigious awards, jointly organised by the Welsh Government and the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW). The awards are sponsored by Pearson PLC and supported by media partner, Media Wales.

As one of the world’s leading communications companies BT must ensure its employees are trained to the highest standards to deliver the services its customers expect. The company employs 91 apprentices in Wales, with plans to recruit 71 more this year.

According to BT, apprentices are five per cent more engaged than the rest of the company’s workforce. The company also has a 96 per cent retention rate over five years.

Working with training provider Acorn, each apprentice has a structured development path and receives on the job training alongside their academic journey with NVQ/study days, progress reviews, development discussions and skills support. Apprenticeships are available in a wide range of roles, from business administration, ICT and engineering and next year BT is introducing cyber security.

“The apprenticeship programme helps us to capture the best talent, skills and leadership capabilities for the future,” said Bob Soper-Dyer, head of BT’s Apprenticeship Programme. “BT has operated apprenticeships for so long it is inherent in our culture and embedded into our talent acquisition strategy, making them integral to workforce planning which forecasts three years ahead.”

Wales’ Minister for Skills and Science Julie James congratulated BT, the other award winners and the shortlisted finalists.

“We are proud to be delivering one of the most successful apprenticeship programmes in Europe with success rates in Wales remaining well above 80 per cent,” she said.

“Developing skilled people is vital for our economy. We have some truly exceptional apprentices here in Wales and the Apprenticeship Awards Cymru provide a perfect platform for us to celebrate their hard work and achievements. Equally important are the learning providers and employers who go the extra mile to support their apprentices.”


Duncan Foulkes Public Relations Limited is a well established communications consultancy based in beautiful Mid Wales.

Incorporating public and media relations, the consultancy provides a range of services to businesses and organisations throughout Wales and the Marches.

A former newspaper journalist for 24 years, Duncan moved into PR in 1999 after editing the County Times & Express & Gazette newspapers – the main weekly titles in Mid Wales – for five years.

His main reason for leaving the newspaper industry was a desire for a new career challenge. His successful PR business predominantly focuses on companies based in Wales and Shropshire.

His motto is to keep things as simple as possible to avoid over-complicating what is a straightforward goal – to achieve media coverage for a client.

Duncan’s wide-ranging work entails media campaigns, researching and drafting press releases, media liaison, political lobbying, event management, organising photocalls, website content advice, social media and newsletters.

He has extensive PR experience of the food and drink, education and training, catering and hospitality, insurance and financial services, manufacturing, tourism, farming, property, fine art, lubricants and telematics sectors.

His contacts extend from local newspapers in Wales to the national print and broadcast media, trade publications and digital media.

Duncan Foulkes PR uses only the most creative photographers, ensuring that photography to support his work is of the highest quality.

He is passionate about issues relating to the countryside and enjoys fly fishing, watching sport and spending time with his family in his spare time.

Services provided:

Public Relations
Media Relations
Public Affairs
Crisis Communications
Event management


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