Apprenticeships - British Florist Association


The Trailblazer apprenticeship in floristry is a great way to lear and earn! Find out everything you need to know right here, whether you are a budding apprentice or an employer seeking information.

On this page is an overview. If you are looking for specifics, we have broken down the information into different pages so that it is easy to find what you are looking for. Just simply follow the links!

Training provider information click here

What will the off the job training be like? click here

An employers guide click here

What agreements and commitments will you need to make? click here

What are the pay and conditions like? click here

The Overview

What will being an apprentice be like and is there an age limit?

Apprenticeships aren’t just for school leavers: you’re never too old to pick up new skills or ramp up your career. Training is both on-site and away from your working environment so that you can learn how the job works in real life AND take the time to concentrate on specific skills.

Apprenticeships allow you to get free training, the opportunity to learn the trade skills and knowledge to improve your working life. There is official recognition for your efforts with a qualification and the possibility to continue into university, if that’s where your career takes you?  

You don’t have to pay for your course. The bill is shared between your employer and the government. In fact, you earn wages while you are training and you have paid holidays. The learning is basically part of the job you’ve been hired for.

If you’re under 19, you are guaranteed the national minimum wage for apprentices and some businesses will pay higher. Companies will discuss pay with you and you will be paid by the business you work for.

More importantly, securing an apprenticeship can boost your earning potential. According to the Apprentice Learner Survey in 2017, one in three apprentices earned a promotion with their employer and three-quarters of respondents were given more responsibility in their roles.

Job satisfaction is also a big factor, with almost two-thirds agreeing the course had improved their quality of life. Eight out of ten felt their apprenticeship improved their ability to do their job, and 92 percent of those that completed their courses reported they were satisfied.

According to a report by City & Guilds, almost 20 per cent of employers have former apprentices in board-level positions. So apprenticeships can really take you further than you might think.

In the meantime, before your executive salaries come rolling in, you can get hold of an NUS Apprentice Extra card that entitles you to discounts at the Co-op, Amazon Prime, Domino’s, BSM and hundreds more. For London-based apprentices, there is an Apprentice Oyster Card to help deal with the costs of travelling, and for people leaving care there is a £1000 bursary as a starter.

As an apprentice you will be:

  • work alongside experienced staff so you will get the benefit of co workers expertise as well as building your network of industry friends. 
  • gain the job-specific skill set you’ll need to take you anywhere in the industry.
  • earn a wage and get paid holiday
  • get dedicated time for study related to your role (usually one day a week)

Floristry Level 2 Apprenticeships will take 1 to 2 years to complete.

Levels of apprenticeship

Apprenticeships have equivalent educational levels.

NameLevelEquivalent educational level
Advanced3A level
Higher4,5,6 and 7Foundation degree and above
Degree6 and 7Bachelor’s or master’s degree

Some apprenticeships may also give you an additional qualification, such as a diploma.

Who can apply

You can apply for an apprenticeship while you’re still at school. To start one, you’ll need to be:

  • 16 or over by the end of the summer holidays
  • living in England
  • not in full-time education

How to apply

There are 3 steps to applying for an apprenticeship.

  1. Search for an apprenticeship
  2. Sign in or create an account.
  3. Complete and submit your application.

The National careers service has advice on writing applications and what to do at interviews.

Q:  Are there different achievement grades available students can achieve?

A:  Yes, each of the three EPA’s have a PASS or DISTINCTION grade which can be achieved.

Q:  If one of the EPA’s is failed can this be re-sit?

A:  Yes, but within a timescale and the employer will may have to arrange the re-sit for the apprentice.

Q:  Can you be an apprentice at any age?

A:  Absolutely – there are no age barriers in this industry!

Q:  How can I find a Training Provider for my apprentice?

A:  Email the BFA who have a list of accredited Training Providers?

Q:  How will apprentices with special educational needs be supported within the L2 apprenticeship programme?

A: Tutors will undertake initial discussions with employers to help support the apprentice within the workplace if there are any additional needs of the student.  Regular review sessions will take place between the employer, apprentice and tutor to make sure support mechanisms are adequate and helping the development of the apprentice.

Q:  Do I need GCSE English and maths Grade C or equivalent to be able to enrol onto the apprenticeship?

A:  You need a minimum of GCSE Grade C (or equivalent) in maths and English.  Level 2 apprentices without prior English and maths at FS Level 2 /or equivalent must achieve level 1 English and maths and take the tests for level 2 prior to taking their EPA for this standard.  Your chosen training provide will advise on the best way to undertake any functional skills in maths and English which are needed.

Q: Is there a lot of theory work for the apprenticeship?

A: Just like any other Level 2 qualification there is quite an amount of underpinning knowledge which will relate to the actual day to day job in a floristry business. 

Q: How much input do I, as an employer have to do?

A: Well, that’s up to you but remember ‘What you put in you will get out!’ An apprentice needs to be seen as part of your team and not just someone to make the tea and sweep up.  You need to be invested in their employment and mentor them through their 6 stages.  Regular progress reviews will be held with your Training Provider and where there are any Skills Gaps these can be addressed. 

Q:  Can I put a new apprentice on a probationary period prior to them being signed up for the apprenticeship scheme?

A:  Yes, remember, apprentices are like all your other team members.  Make sure you give your new apprentice a contract of employment and job description on Day 1 so they are aware of the rules and regulations of your business and organise a suitable induction into your business for them.  Make sure you have regular one to one sessions with your apprentice to check on their progress.

Q:  What is the current apprenticeship wage?

A:  Always refer to: website where any updates become available. The apprenticeship wage is £4.81 in April 2022.  Apprentices are entitled to the apprenticeship rate if they’re either: aged under 19 or 19 or over and in the first year of their apprenticeship.  After an apprentice has completed one year of their apprenticeship then their wage will revert to the correct wage for their age as set out by the UK Government.

Q:  Can I look at a copy of the L2 Apprenticeship Standard?

A:  Yes, go to www.instituteforapprenticeships  and the L2 Florist Standard number is: ST0538

Note:  The course layout may differ between Training Provider and it is recommended that employers/apprentices understand the requirements of the TP they have chosen.

Q: I’m in my second year of apprenticeship and my employer still only pays me £4.81 per hour.

A: If you are aged 18 or under then your employer is paying you the correct rate. If you are 19 and over your employer must pay you the higher rate relevant to your age group.

Q: My employer pays me the apprentice rate of £4.81 per hour but I don’t officially start my apprenticeship for another two months.

A: It is illegal for your employer to pay you the apprentice rate before or after your apprenticeship. You are entitled to be paid the higher rate relevant to your age group.

Q: I’m not being paid for the time I spend training.

A: Time spent training is working time so you should be paid at least the National Minimum Wage for this time. It does not matter whether training takes place at work, college or elsewhere. The training can even be outside normal working hours.

If you’re unsuccessful

You can ask for feedback if you do not get selected for an interview or for the apprenticeship.

You can complain if you think you were not successful because you were discriminated against, or your treatment in the interview or application process was unfair.

Apprenticeship helpline
Telephone: 0800 015 0400
8am to 10pm, 7 days a week
Find out about call charges

If you need more experience

If you feel you’re not ready for an apprenticeship, a traineeship is a course designed to prepare you for one. Click the link to find out more.

Apprenticeships in Scotland and Wales

Different organisations deal with apprenticeships in Scotland and apprenticeships in Wales the link below will take you to where you need to go to find out more.

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