Express & Star

Ladder for the Black Country: PTP recruits apprentices for American Express

Training experts Performance Through People – part of Ladder for the Black Country – helped recruit 14 apprentices to train in new roles at American Express Global Business Travel.


The recruits will all be working with the company as travel counsellors, working towards qualifying in travel consultant level three apprenticeships.

American Express Global Business Travel offers clients a full service for booking trips, managing expenses and looking after all travellers’ needs.

The special project has been managed by Maureen Begum, a performance manager at Walsall-based PTP Training, part of the BCTG Group.

Ms Begum said: “We started discussions with American Express Global Business Travel last December when they were planning a new apprenticeship programme for their London offices.

“These were new roles to the business and they were looking to work with a provider who would support the recruitment from the initial advertising stage through to employment, with the same partner delivering the apprenticeship programme.”

Ms Begum explained that this was the first time that PTP had worked with American Express Global Business Travel, although PTP has worked in the travel industry for more than 20 years.

PTP clients included HRG – the Hogg Robinson Group – which has since been taken over by American Express Global Business Travel.

PTP’s experience means it was rated at the top grade of ‘outstanding’ in its last Ofsted inspection for the retail, travel and hospitality sector.

American Express Global Business Travel were keen to recruit from underrepresented groups, and PTP’s first apprenticeship cohort reflects apprentices from a range of ethnicity groups and from ages 17 to 42 years.

The recruitment plans were agreed with American Express Global Business Travel in May with PTP selecting over 100 applicants for initial interviews.

Ms Begum said that PTP was overwhelmed with applications, and that the company worked hard at assessing these by remote video.

She added: “The final selection of 14 apprentices was made by American Express Global Business Travel and their induction took place at their offices in Canary Wharf last month when everyone came face to face for the first time.

“The apprenticeship programme is now set to last around 15 months before they then qualify as travel consultants.”

Ignacio D'Onia, team coach at American Express Global Business Travel, said: “We’re really pleased with the apprentices we have recruited and are grateful to PTP for their focused selection assistance.

“American Express Global Business Travel aims to have clients’ whole trip covered, as new work styles drive up the need to connect through travel and meetings.

“We’re there to support clients through it all in whatever way works for their business, and we’re looking forward to seeing our apprentices become fully skilled in this role.”

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