ExCeL LONDON, 23 & 24 November 2018, 9.30am - 4pm

The UK's biggest jobs and careers event

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Skills London Blog


Top 10 Tips for Exhibiting




With 6 months to go until Skills London 2017, we want to provide you with advice and top tips for exhibiting so you can make the most of the event.  Please see below our top 10 tips for exhibiting, we hope you find them useful!




1. Set clear objectives

Make sure you know what you’re aiming to get out of the show and share the objectives with the rest of your team. Is your objective to sign up apprentices, recruit new students, create awareness of a new products, conduct market research or gain press coverage?







2. Stand engagement is key

The target audience at Skills London is predominantly 14 – 19 year olds, their parents, carers and other involved professionals. Whether you have a big or small stand, make it interesting, fun and engaging with eye-catching graphics, brand ambassadors in fancy dress, a competition, hands-on activities, sampling – you name it!





3. Designing your stand

Prior to the event, measure the size of your stand and consider a theme, graphics, furniture, colour scheme, AV and how many members of staff you will need on your stand. The visitors will need some encouragement, so it is important your stand is inviting rather than a barrier. Make sure clutter, half-drunk cups of coffee, empty cardboard boxes and half-eaten sandwiches are hidden away in the storage room provided for exhibitors.





4. Read the exhibitor manual

The exhibitor manual will be emailed to you at least 8 weeks prior to the event which provides an A – Z of everything you need to know about the event. This includes shell scheme measurements, speaker opportunities, parking costs and so on. Our comprehensive exhibitor manual will save you time and money, plus help you to enjoy a hassle-free exhibition.





5. Order your services

If you are bringing iPads, laptops, TV screens or games consoles you will need to order an electrical socket. Think about what furniture you will need, literature racks to display marketing materials or seating for one-to-one conversations with visitors. You will be able to find links to the electric, furniture, graphics and AV order forms in the exhibitor manual.





6. Link with our marketing team

The marketing team can give you key information on which schools are booked in from your local authority. If there are schools you would like to see at the event, drop natasha.creighton@prospects.co.uk an email to ask if they have been contacted. Be sure to promote your stand through social media channels before, during and after the event and provide the marketing team with any interesting facts we may be able to use in our visitor marketing campaign by emailing fiona.whitewood@prospects.co.uk







7. Book your place at the Exhibitor Masterclass

The Skills London Exhibitor Masterclass will be taking place on Tuesday 19th September 2017 at London’s Living Room, City Hall. An official invite will be emailed to all exhibitors and organisations interested in getting involved in Skills London. Put the date in your diary and stay tuned for more information







8. Choose your staff wisely

Picking the right people to staff your stand and giving them sufficient training plays a huge part in your success at the event. Discuss a dress code for your team and ask them to avoid using their mobile phones, sitting behind a desk and having their backs to the aisles. Each member of staff is a brand ambassador and is responsible for your company’s corporate presence at the show.







9. Complete your risk assessment

Every exhibition stand is a miniature workplace and therefore needs a risk assessment. You must complete and return a risk assessment that looks at the hazards, risks and control methods you have in place for your exhibition stand, including the build-up, open period and breakdown. A blank risk assessment and an example risk assessment are included in the exhibitor manual and needs to be returned to your event organiser before the event.







10. Review and follow up leads

Make sure that you have planned a follow up communication for any leads generated at the event. We recommend sending a follow up email within a week of the show. When you’re back in the office, assess the success of the show and ROI, you would be surprised how many exhibitors don’t follow-up their leads!









How can employers make the most of the apprenticeship levy?



 In spring 2017 the way the government funds apprenticeships in England is changing. The apprenticeship levy is being introduced on 6 April 2017, which requires all employers operating in the UK, with a pay bill over £3 million each year, to invest in apprenticeships.

Here are our top five tips to ensure you make the most of it:

1. Establish your business needs

By being proactive and identifying areas in an organisation where training is most needed, employers will have the opportunity to ensure that the apprenticeship levy works in favour of their organisation. This involves creating a successful training programme with a clear understanding of how an apprentice will benefit their business in the short and long term.

2. Calculate what your levy payments will be

The apprenticeship levy is charged at 0.5% of your annual pay bill. For more information on how to calculate this visit the government website

3. Find the right training provider

Once you have defined a clear rationale for your training programme within your organisation, your next step will be to choose the appropriate training provider. Take the time to research providers, their specialisms, whether they have worked on similar programmes and what outcomes they have achieved is crucial.

4. Run a pilot scheme

If you do not already deliver apprenticeships, now is the time to start a pilot scheme. This will enable organisations to test the programme and gain useful insight before it is rolled out.

5. Take an active role in apprentice recruitment at Skills London 2017!

Skills London 2017 is a perfect opportunity to promote your apprenticeship opportunities. With over 32,000 young people coming through the doors, Skills London 2017 provides face to face access to the target audience. Book your stand now!


How to make the most of your apprenticeship

Guest blog by Jessica Austin, Apprentice Surveyor at Land Securities

I never knew there was such a thing as a career in property, let alone having a clue about what a surveyor was until I attended the Pathways to Property Summer School in the summer of 2014. From there, I was linked to CBRE through the work experience programme they offer. The summer school inspired me to learn more about a career as a surveyor but the work experience cemented it. I remember standing on the 39th floor of the South Bank Tower looking over London, and thinking, this is what I want to do for the rest of my life.

So, I applied to do Real Estate at the University of Reading and applied for the apprenticeship too, just to be on the safe side, I thought. However, here I am, in my second year of my apprenticeship currently on a secondment to Land Securities, and I have never once looked back and thought I wish I had gone down the traditional route to university.

I think the most valuable thing about doing an apprenticeship is the practical experience. I am learning things that I wouldn’t get to learn until my third or fourth year at university. Another real benefit has been the exposure to people inside the industry. As part of the CBRE Apprenticeship, you have year long rotations. By the end of it, I will have worked in four different teams, in four different parts of the business (and if you have the opportunity, like me, to be seconded, you’ll have worked at another organisation too). This undeniably means my network is likely to be much bigger than a graduate’s.

As a young person, entering the corporate world, it’s been so useful to have a lot of support within the business. I think the best thing about being at CBRE is that I am not treated like an ‘apprentice’. I have the opportunity to be involved in work that I would never have thought I could have been involved in at school. As a business, line managers are also trained in managing an apprentice.

CBRE have always been there for me since the first day I entered the business on my first day of work experience. Kimberley Henry, our apprenticeship coordinator provides amazing support for all of us.

Anyone considering an apprenticeship should just go for it! The way things are going, and with something called the apprenticeship levy, it is now in a company’s best interest to start apprenticeship schemes. The levy means that money is being taken from large organisations in order to incentivise them to claim it back by filtering it through the apprenticeship training. I see graduate and apprenticeship intake almost becoming equal in the next 5 years.

The government introducing the apprenticeship levy has definitely been a good place to start, however I think more awareness definitely needs to be raised within schools. There is still a lot of stigma around apprenticeships and that needs to change.

A recent government campaign resonates with me ‘GET IN GO FAR’, which was great. It really gave apprenticeships the sort of publicity they deserve. This needs to continue but also driving it through schools.



A road less travelled; the non-traditional way into Chartered Surveying

Guest blog by Harvin Chohan, Apprentice in Residential Development Consultancy at CBRE

When you hear the word ‘apprenticeship’ typically the first jobs that come to are builder, plumber or electrician and, whilst this may have been the picture many years ago, in today’s world it couldn’t be further from the truth. 

There’s a huge choice of apprenticeships out there today. Mine will enable me to become a chartered surveyor and a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, a qualification that means I can work anywhere in the world, if I choose.

Having joined CBRE aged 18, directly after my A-Levels, I would say the toughest decision was to break away from the crowd and pursue my own career path. Coming from a grammar school background where attending university was the norm, the idea of an apprenticeship was met with concern and disagreement.  Choosing an apprenticeship over a traditional university pathway was a challenge as I needed to prove to my parents and teachers that an apprenticeship would provide me with skills and knowledge to become a success within a professional service industry.  

Two years into my apprenticeship I can confidently say it is without doubt the best decision I’ve made.

Now in the second of my four seat rotations with CBRE, I am currently in the Residential Development Consultancy department working with some of the best professionals in the property industry. I have gained a plethora of practical industry experience working for the world’s leading commercial property and real estate services. In addition to this, I’m enrolled on an undergraduate degree and studying part time towards a BSc in real estate management.  

As my employer is funding my degree when I complete my apprenticeship I will be debt free, plus I have been earning a salary since I joined CBRE. The benefits seem clear to me.

If you’re someone who prefers a more practical approach to learning and doesn’t want to be fully engrossed in an academic environment then I would say that an apprenticeship is definitely worth considering.  Despite not fully experiencing the ‘university lifestyle’ you will gain as many, if not more, life skills through being immersed in a corporate environment from a young age.

To me, an apprenticeship presents an opportunity for you to begin building your relationships with key players in the industry as, after all, your network is your net worth. 

Harvin is featured below speaking at the Skills London 2016 Business Breakfast.


National Apprenticeship Week 2017 Guest Blog: Dylan Haplin, Rail Engineering Apprentice at Thales

These days, a child’s life is often mapped out for them before they’ve even taken their first breath and a lot of these future plans end in university. But what happens if you choose to break this mould?

I happened to be the child that didn’t learn when plonked in front of a textbook or through theoretical analogies. But, being naturally mathematical and methodical I found myself looking to engineering as a career goal. When sixth form was forced onto me I found myself stuck studying subjects that wouldn’t and couldn’t play a part in my plans. This realisation encouraged me to look at what else was out there and studying at college made me realise the benefits an apprenticeship could bring to my career prospects. Without having to face the daunting commitment of large student loans, debts and the stress of the university application process, I came across Thales which was offering the same level of education but with the added benefit of being able to practically apply what I would learn.


In the months I have been with Thales, I have already been able to work alongside professionals within a highly skilled industry. I have seen the hidden side of the underground and the many people and companies it takes to keep it together. I have been offered the opportunity to play my part in this by testing radio quality and even connecting phone lines.


To support me to progress with my training, I have been provided with a support system at the company. This system means I have all the correct certifications to enable me to be of value when on placement and also to protect my interests as I develop in the roles I am placed in. My qualification at the end of my apprenticeship will be Level 3 Rail Technician.


What would I advise other young people thinking about an apprenticeship? Before deciding on any job role or career path it’s important to look into exactly what you would be undertaking. With an apprenticeship, although it is opportunity to further your education, it is also an entry into the world of work. With the available support provided you receive the knowledge necessary within a practical environment creating a seam free transition into industry.


I believe the government could encourage more people into apprenticeships by providing more information about them, allowing young people to weigh up the decision with the facts. At school it sometimes feels like a taboo to talk about straying from the traditional path to university, but university isn’t for everyone. Apprenticeships bring so many benefits - not only being able to learn from experts in their trade, but by gaining hands on experience too.


To find out more about apprenticeships, visit Skills London on 24&25 November 2017 at ExCel, London. Please click here if you are an employer or training provider and would like to exhibit at Skills London.




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