BAE is recruiting, and this is no ordinary milk round. The defence firm, which manufactures everything from fighter jets to hi-tech weapons, missiles to submarines, is looking for around 400 new recruits from a variety of backgrounds to learn the trade from the ground up.
Around 140 young people will join the submarine-building business in Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria, another 100 are bound for the firm's ship-building sites in Portsmouth and Glasgow and the rest will be spread out across BAE's other sites, focusing on military aircraft manufacture.
One in 10 of these latest trainees will also join the firm's five-year higher apprentice programme, which combines on-the-job training with degree-level studies - earn while you learn, as they used to call it. All 400 of the new recruits are guaranteed a job at the end of their apprenticeships too.
BAE has always been an active recruiter of apprentices, taking on an average of 300 per year. But this is the first year since the financial crisis began that the figure has topped 400. It has been a very successful strategy for BAE, as apprentices are more likely to stay with the firm long-term, and the competitive package ensures a steady intake of highly skilled and competent candidates.
BAE's group managing director Nigel Whitehead says: 'Our continued commitment to the apprentice programme reflects the sustainable position of our UK business and the success of the programme in generating BAE Systems' workforce of the future. We like to train people from an early age and find that the combination of on-the-job training and academic study without debt, is a great motivator for our apprentices to stay with us.'
Know a bright young thing who wants to get into munitions (legally)? They can apply for a BAE Systems apprenticeship here