How much do you actually know about apprentices? My first blog skimmed over this topic, and explained that I was sceptical about applying for an apprenticeship, mostly due to the fact I didn’t really know much about them besides the tales of low pay and going to college once a week. However, my experience has been very different to the rumours. This month, I wanted to use this opportunity to explain how the scheme can benefit both an apprentices’ personal and professional life using my own experiences.
- Earn whilst you Learn
Being a college student is tricky. You feel too old to financially depend on parents, but education takes up too much time to get anything more than a part-time weekend job. With an apprenticeship scheme, you can kill two birds with one stone, along with lots of other treats that come with the programme.
For me, it was more learn whilst I earn. I wasn’t getting the experience needed to get into the marketing industry at college, so I decided hands on experience would be a lot more beneficial. However I so desperately didn’t want to leave education. So being able to work in a job that I wanted, as well as learning is perfect! But of course the earning is a great bonus too.
- Professional start to your career
Figures show that 58% of employers rated work experience as “the most popular qualification among those presented”. Why not get the work experience through a paid apprenticeship? This is the perfect way to get your foot in the door of your chosen industry as employers don’t necessarily expect apprentices to have experience.
Marketing agencies will undoubtedly be looking for experienced employees because of the competitive nature of the industry. However, being an apprentice means I can get into the industry; actively learn about it whilst in my work place; and come out the other end with all the experience I need.
Not only do apprenticeship schemes give you work experience, but also life experience. My confidence has been totally revamped and my ability to professionally conduct myself has been significantly enhanced. I’ve been learning things about myself that I didn’t even know I needed to.
- You’re not alone
Personally, I find myself surrounded by friends, family and colleagues who are more than willing to help me at work as well as home, even if it’s just talking through what I am doing.
My first line of help was from Green Labyrinth who still continuously help me by guiding me down the right track, making sure my work is being completed to the right quality and supporting me through everything I need.
The team at All Things Web® are similarly as encouraging as they also want to see me thrive in my apprenticeship programme. The constant advice and guidance is amazing.
Finally, family and friends are also very intrigued about my progress. They find the idea of an apprentice very exciting and always want to know what I’m doing at work and some have even thought about becoming an apprentice themselves!
- Confidence boaster
Every now and then nerves would get the better of me, but I never saw myself as shy. Nevertheless, after leaping from college into a business environment, I soon learnt that I needed to possess a whole different kind of confidence.
Being an administration apprentice means I am on the front line when it comes to phone calls into the business and meeting clients. I therefore had to work on my professional manor. This is a skill that will stick with me for life no matter what situation I find myself in. It’s not the kind of experience you’d find in day to day college which is why I feel my apprenticeship scheme has benefited my personal life as well as started my career.
- It is versatile
The majority of apprentices do not just lie in one area as you have a lot of ground you need to cover to pass it. This means that not only am I picking up lots of administrative skills, but I am getting very much involved in the marketing with the team which I would have never been involved with if I was placed somewhere else.
- Apprenticeship or Uni?
Yes being an apprentice won’t make you a millionaire overnight but it won’t leave you in debt either. One of the things I didn’t realise was how advanced an apprenticeship can actually be. There are 4 levels of apprenticeships; intermediate, advanced, higher and degree level. A degree apprenticeship can actually lead to a full undergraduate degree as part of the apprenticeship and can also lead onto university or a professional qualification.
Knowing these things was a big contributing factor to why I applied for my apprenticeship at All Things Web® and I still do not regret my decision one bit. I truly believe this choice will stay with me for life in regards to both my personal and professional life.
If you are thinking about becoming an apprentice or hiring an apprentice, and want to find out more information about our experiences then feel free to contact us on 01793 766040 – we’d be happy to arrange a coffee and a chat.