Pearce Hire first committed to an intern development programme with Peterborough Regional College (PRC) 4 years ago; since the programmes inception, the team has expanded exponentially with a number of permanent staff, declared as ‘home grown’ via the project.
Headed by Warehouse Manager, Jim Brown, the internship programme allows students to be given the opportunity to gain practical, hands-on experience of working at the HQ of a busy rental production company. “This year there have been some new requirements set down for the students and their course work, and because we acknowledge the value the intern programme brings to Pearce Hire on a number of levels, then we were more than happy to adapt our structure to suit.”
As a result, throughout 2017, Pearce Hire has embarked on a number of initiatives to nurture young talent in the technical and event production industry; delivering a 4-month rolling programme of 1-week placements for over 20 1st year students at PRC, who have each participated in 30-hours work experience, over the course of one-week placements. “We have long lamented the limited availability of trained technicians coming into the industry so with this programme we’ve put our money where our mouth is and opened our company up to these enthusiastic, young ‘technicians in training’ to allow them to see what it is all about,” continued Brown. “Not only is there the CSR aspect to this initiative, more importantly we are helping to nurture the next generation’s talents, skills, and hopefully instil ‘best practice’ in the formative years of their careers.”
“Given the cyclical peaks and troughs of the core sectors we work in, it also enables us to build up a crew database, which offers us the potential for offering students seasonal work, where a lot of the relevant but time-consuming induction work is done and they already have a familiarity of the company and its ethos, the warehouse layout, and the actual projects we are working towards. Which is becoming even more important as we get busier and busier – throughout 2017 we have provided services to over 2,000 events.”
The intern system created by Pearce Hire has paid dividends as permanent team members have joined following their intern experience in recent years. Dave Richardson – one of the very first interns to come to Pearce Hire from PRC, and an alumnus of the BTEC Extended Diploma in Music Technology course has been working at Pearce Hire for over 4 years and is a Junior Technician. Jake Langham is a more recent addition to the team and he brings an expertise in lighting following his graduation from the BTEC Level 3 Production Arts course.
For the past 18 months, Chris Mear has been part of the Pearce Hire team on an Electrical Installation Apprenticeship for one day a week, as part of his City & Guilds 3-year course, and is currently part of the Hire department team whilst on a short hiatus from his apprenticeship. Comments Mear “I got my inspiration for working in the industry whilst I was still at school, working on amateur dramatic productions where kit was hired from Pearce Hire. I badgered Pearce Hire for holiday work over the years and now I am officially an employee of Pearce Hire as part of a Local Council and Government sponsored initiative. I couldn’t have been luckier to have a local company such as Pearce Hire interested, and enthusiastic about supporting the next generation of technicians!”
Shaun Pearce, MD of Pearce Hire, concluded: “2017 has been an exceptional year for Pearce Hire and we are delighted to have such an impressive group of young talent now imbedded in our team. Dave, Jake, Chris, and now Zack are now fully integrated into the team and we know that we are in a strong position to continue to offer excellent standards of production service to all our clients. The younger technicians, crew and students who we work with throughout the year are a major reason why we are on such an expansion drive. We are looking ahead with great enthusiasm to 2018 and hope to celebrate another record year of business!”