Level 2 and level 5 sector specific

With an ageing workforce and Brexit having reduced the pool of willing and capable operatives, taking on an apprentice is a simple solution to plugging that gap. It also enables skilled workers looking to retire to pass on their knowledge.

For SMEs in particular, apprentices are a very cost-effective way to employ and train employees. This is because while large companies that pay more than £3m in wages pay an Apprenticeship Levy, companies below that threshold do not pay the Levy and the Government even funds 95 percent of the cost of your apprenticeship training.

The first cohort of the MRGO

Don’t forget that you can also choose to pay the National Minimum Wage for apprentices which, for those aged 19 or over in their first year is £4.15 per hour and thereafter rises to the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage rate for their age. The two apprenticeships available to this sector are the level 2 metal  recycling general operative (MRGO)and the level 5 metal recycling technical manager (MRTM). 

This month, we are celebrating the three-year anniversary of the launch of the MRGO in the presence of Sir Gerry Berragan, the then CEO of the Institute for Apprenticeships and Further Education. 

An MRGO apprentice will develop a knowledge and appreciation of a wide range of processes, site administration, risk assessment as well as legislation relating to metal recycling. The MRGO will attain the skills to operate industry-specific and generic plant and equipment, such as a forklift truck, shear and cable strippers. Safety will form a key element of the MRGO’s role – they will be expected to work safely within a team to ensure materials are processed and handled in the correct and safest way.

As well as undertaking the core learnings, apprentices need to choose from one of five specialist routes: 

  • End-of-Life Vehicles Operative
  • Material Classification Operative
  • Material Handler (Specialist
  • Equipment) Operative
  • Waste Electrical & Electronic Equipment Operative
  • Weighbridge Operative

Don’t just take it from us, though. Here is what some of our MRGO apprentices have to say: Liam from Sims Metal UK said: “I did the apprenticeship because I wanted to learn more about the metals recycling industry and the different types of roles on site so I could further my career in the sector.”

Christopher from Recycled Products said: “As well as learning about all the regulations and legislation, I have got my NPORS qualification for the telehandler forklift and the 360 grab.”

 BMRA also ran a webinar to explore the MRGO and you can watch this here: https://youtu.be/feozkLNhhg8

Along with training provider APT Health & Safety, BMRA is looking to recruit new cohorts for the MRGO apprenticeship to start in January. If you have a candidate(s) you would like to put forward, please email [email protected].