GAS Shortlisted as regional finalist for National Apprenticeship Award

Great Annual Savings Group (GAS) has been shortlisted as a regional finalist for the 2016 National Apprenticeship Awards.

The Group’s excellent Apprenticeship Scheme, which is now taking applications for an October 2016 intake, has been commended for the conditions, pay and level of responsibility its participants receive.

GAS was advised to enter the awards by delivery partner Apprenticeships 4 U following a successful first eight months and the confirmation of a second intake.

It seems the judges agreed with this assessment, selecting a total of 81 regional finalists from across the country from more than 1,000 entries. GAS has been named as a North East finalist alongside Sage, Nifco UK, Hays Travel, Blue Sky Tax and Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

If GAS is successful in the ‘newcomer SME of the year’ category, the Group will be invited to a national final early in 2017. This category is open to companies with a scheme under two years old and with under 250 staff.

Judith Bennison, Group HR Director, said: “We are thrilled for our apprenticeship scheme to receive this recognition. We’ve been vocal about the importance of apprenticeships to businesses and the economy, so for our own scheme to be recognised is fantastic.

“The National Apprenticeship Awards are a prestigious mark of quality, which shows what a great opportunity is on offer to apprentices at GAS. We’re thrilled with how our current cohort are progressing since joining in 2015 and we hope our second intake proves as successful.”

The regional finals take place in October.

Find out more about the GAS Apprenticeship Scheme here:

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Paul JohnsonGroup Financial Director

Paul Johnson is very much a home-grown talent.

He joined Great Annual Savings Group in its infancy, fresh from a youth career as a professional footballer with Hartlepool United.  He quickly established a reputation within the business and aced all required accountancy qualifications in the space of four years to become the Group’s Management Accountant.

Several successful projects later, Paul was promoted to Head of Finance.  When the former FD left GAS, he took on the mantle of the business’ most senior finance professional; boasting a string of incredible achievements all under the age of 30.


“I have witnessed phenomenal growth at the Group over the many years I’ve worked here and I’m looking forward to guiding the Group into an exciting new chapter.”

Interesting fact:

Paul made his professional debut for Hartlepool United against Bournemouth in the Football League.  Some say Danny Ings still resides in his pocket to this day.