The Apprentice - Episode Twelve – Lawyer’s summary


3 mins

Posted on 21 Dec 2015

The Apprentice - Series 11, Episode 12 - 21 December - The last instalment of Chloe Harrold's column for The HR Director

Congratulations Joseph! Lord Sugar chose to fix broken boilers, rather than broken hearts. The bookies favourite candidate since before the series even started won the £250,000 investment. Well done Joseph, an impressive achievement, especially for someone who was expelled from school.

Lord Sugar told Joseph and Vana at the start of the show to research the market, create a digital billboard and present their business idea. Vana needed to show that her dating app would make money, not just eat up Lord Sugar’s. Joseph needed to demonstrate how he could expand his small plumbing outfit into a large, ultimately multi-million pound business.

Vana got off to a good start, choosing those for her team who she knew would be helpful, even if she didn’t like them (Richard Woods). She was all business and made it very clear how the show would be run: “I don’t really want too much fun”.

Joseph’s original business plan included, as a key feature, renewable technology but a British Gas executive told the team that renewable technology would not be taking off within the next five years. Joseph went on to leave a meeting with the heads of big energy businesses with several of their business cards, and a new USP – Smart technology.

Vana presented very well, she was professional, articulate and impressive. What harmed her chances was the potential heavy investment needed before seeing a return. Vana’s team discovered through their research that apps take a long time to deliver a return on investment, 10 – 15 dating apps go out of business in the UK each week, and it’s difficult to get people to pay for it.

Ultimately Joseph had the most reliable, least risky business plan – there will always be a need for plumbers.

Now that Lord Sugar has his Apprentice, what should he think about from an HR point of view? I very much doubt Lord Sugar will give a second thought to HR procedures; he’ll have a whole team dealing with that. They’ll (hopefully) be putting together a comprehensive employment contract, obtaining references, checking his right to work (don’t make assumptions employers – always check every worker’s passport) and putting together an induction plan.

Good luck Joseph, and all of the candidates. You’ve entertained us for the last couple of months and taught us a lot (mainly how not to do things). See you next year Lord Sugar and co, I can’t wait!

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