BiKBBI Launches Support Desk to Promote KBB Installation Careers

Published: August 21, 2023

The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation (BiKBBI) has launched a dedicated Careers Support Desk with the aim of attracting GCSE and A-Level students in to the KBB industry as part of the institute’s ongoing strategy to close the skills gap and drive change across the sector.

As Results Day looms for thousands of 16–19-year-olds across the UK, BiKBBI’s Careers Support Desk, delivered in conjunction with The Apprenticeship Partner, will provide a much-needed vehicle to signpost ambitious young people that are contemplating their futures towards the opportunities that a career in KBB installations can bring. 

The BiKBBI Careers Support Desk will enable young people interested in exploring a career in installation to connect directly with dedicated advisors who can provide them with an insight into the Level 2 Fitted Furniture Installer apprenticeship, as well as information on training providers, and assistance with finding employment. The Support Desk will be promoted via BiKBBI’s digital and social media platforms, working with a number of strategic partners to help reach young people across the UK. 

A vocational apprenticeship route offers young people an outstanding opportunity to gain respected skill-based qualifications, learn about real-world business management and achieve great career outcomes without a lifetime of debt. These qualifications serve as a testament to the qualified apprentice’s expertise and readiness, giving them a competitive edge in the KBB installation sector. A research paper published by the House of Commons in February this year reported that the number of people starting apprenticeships increased by 9% in 2021/2022, while UCAS figures show a decline in the number of people applying to universities in 2023. 

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“This change in behavior is good news for those industries reliant on vocational courses and suffering from skills shortages, but it does mean that it is more important than ever that the KBB sector is visible and able to compete for future talent,” said BiKBBI CEO Damian Walters. “Bringing young people into our sector is critical. On top of a well-publicized skills gap crisis, we have an aging workforce, which will only lead to further challenges and labor shortages in the future. 

“The Fitted Furniture Installer course is a fairly new pathway, and most school and college leavers will not be aware of the course and therefore might be thinking their options are limited to more traditional qualifications, such as plumbing or carpentry. The BiKBBI Careers Support Desk is just one of a number of initiatives we are delivering to increase the profile of the qualification, attract fresh talent and encourage employers to embrace apprenticeships within our sector.” 

Following the launch of the BiKBBI Careers Support Desk, which went live on Aug. 7 2023, BiKBBI also has plans for a follow up campaign whereby its education advisor, The Apprenticeship Partner, will seek potential employers that match the needs of budding apprentices. 

“There will be thousands of education leavers that are undecided about their futures at the moment, and it is really important for them and the KBB industry that we highlight the career opportunities that the installation sector can bring,” said Hannah Hockley, managing director of The Apprenticeship Partner and chair of the BiKBBI Education Steering Committee. “We want to go further than leafleting at careers events and posting ads on social media, and what we are creating is an opportunity for young people to have a conversation with a real person that can offer meaningful guidance at a time and place that suits them. The KBB installation sector and the wider KBB industry provides a vast range of opportunities, and we believe this approach will go some way to promoting the possibilities to a fresh pool of talent.”

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