Virgin Media becomes the first UK company to launch part-time apprenticeship scheme

07 March 2018

  • Innovative new apprenticeship launches as the company celebrates the ten year anniversary of its apprenticeship programme

To celebrate the tenth anniversary of its apprenticeship programme, Virgin Media will become the first private company in the UK to launch a structured part-time apprenticeship scheme. The scheme is part of Virgin Media’s drive to make apprenticeships more inclusive and diverse than ever before. Since the inception of the programme 839 apprenticeships have been completed by Virgin Media employees.

The announcement came during National Apprenticeship Week as Virgin Media hosted a live-webcast from its dedicated training centre in Birmingham. The company already has around 200 apprentices working at a range of levels and in a range of departments all over the country.

Virgin Media plans to invest up to £4 million in apprenticeships, using the levy over the next two years to address skills shortages, improve workplace diversity and attract the broadest possible range of people into the telecommunications sector. The company has been working with the Young Women’s Trust since 2016, becoming the first technology company to sign a pledge committing to increasing female representation across its apprenticeships. The pledge, as well as new apprenticeships introduced last year, helped Virgin Media increase female enrolments by 66% between 2016 and 2017.

Virgin Media initially started out offering a small range of field-based apprenticeships for field technicians, network planning and engineering based roles. However, over the past 12 months it has expanded the range of levels and roles on offer to improve diversity and attract talent. Virgin Media now offers apprenticeships in a range of non-conventional business areas including HR, Legal, Finance and Data Analytics as well as the more traditional disciplines.

Catherine Lynch, Chief People Officer, Virgin Media said “On the job learning works for everyone. Our flexible and diverse apprenticeships are helping jump-start careers across Virgin Media from aspiring field-technicians right through to finance gurus. There has never been a better time to join our team.”

The Rt Hon Anne Milton MP, Minister for Apprenticeships & Skills, welcomed the announcement, saying “It’s fantastic to see firms like Virgin Media investing in new high-quality apprenticeships. This new part-time apprenticeship will make it even easier for people training on the job and will help develop the digital skills our economy urgently needs.”

The company launched its first apprenticeship 10 years ago and more than half of the original apprentices are still working at Virgin Media. Last year, Virgin Media doubled the number of apprenticeships on offer and plans to recruit even more apprentices into a wide range of schemes in 2018.

Notes to Editors

Press contacts:

Luke Stallard or Phoebe Whittome, Virgin Media – 0333 000 2900,

Twitter: @VirginMediaCorp****

About the programmes

Virgin Media offers apprenticeships at a range of levels ranging from level 2, equivalent to 5 GCSEs, right through to level 7, equivalent to a master’s degree.

Details on Virgin Media’s approach to Apprenticeships can be found here.

Details on the schemes can be found here.

Virgin Media currently or plans to offer apprenticeships in the following areas;

  • Field Technician
  • Network and Business Engineering
  • Network and Business Planning
  • Data Services
  • Law
  • People
  • Learning and Development
  • Procurement
  • Finance
  • Analytics

Virgin Media constantly reviews its portfolio of schemes based on the new apprenticeship standards being developed. A new part-time field technician apprenticeship is planned to start in May.

Key statistics

Number of apprentices currently on a programme: 196

Number of apprenticeships completed at Virgin Media to date: 839

Number of apprentices who have completed schemes and still work at Virgin Media: 464

Increase in female apprentice enrolments from 2016 – 2017: 66%

4 new schemes offered in the last 12 months

The number of apprenticeship enrolments doubled from 2016 to 2017 (142 at end of 2017)

Featured in 2017: All about School Leavers, Rate My Apprenticeship, The Job Crowd Top 50 employers for apprenticeships

About Virgin Media

Virgin Media offers four multi award-winning services across the UK and Ireland: broadband, TV, mobile phone and landline.

Our dedicated, ultrafast network delivers the fastest widely-available broadband speeds to homes and businesses and we’re expanding this through our Project Lightning programme, which will extend our network to 17 million premises.

Our interactive Virgin TV service brings live TV, thousands of hours of on-demand programming and the best apps and games to customers through a set-top box, as well as on-the-go through tablets and smartphones.

Virgin Mobile launched the world’s first virtual mobile network and offers fantastic value and innovative services with 4G connectivity. We are also one of the largest fixed-line home phone providers in the UK and Ireland.

Through Virgin Media Business we support entrepreneurs, businesses and the public sector, delivering the fastest widely available broadband speeds and tailor-made services.

Virgin Media is part of Liberty Global, the world’s largest international TV and broadband company. Liberty Global connects over 22 million customers through operations in 12 countries across Europe subscribing to more than 46 million TV, broadband internet and telephony services. It also serves over 6 million mobile subscribers and offers WiFi service through 10 million access points across its footprint.