Apprenticeships give people of all ages the ladder of opportunity to get paid experience in work and achieve their chosen qualification at the same time. At Medigold Health we firmly believe that bright and talented people are critical to the long-term success and sustainability of our economy.
To round-up National Apprenticeships Week 2018, we have interviewed two of our ambitious apprentices Shaun Blunsom and Leanne Cox.
What does your typical day look like?
I must admit no two days are the same in this role! A typical day for me would involve getting tasks from my manager and colleagues, helping out in the office and answering IT helpdesk calls. I also go round the office and fix any IT issues that need resolving and set up new equipment. I have recently been given the responsibility of IT inductions for new starters, this involves setting people up and guiding them through all internal systems.
What do you like best about your job?
The people and interacting with lots of people on a daily basis. I find the job really interesting and I enjoy learning lots of different things. I really like the fact that I have learnt so much in the last 6 months.
Why did you decide to start an apprenticeship?
I studied IT at A Level and really enjoyed it. I decided I wanted a career in IT but was unsure which department or area of IT I wanted to pursue. I liked the idea of learning on the job so that I could find out which areas of IT I liked best and what my key my skills are. I chose the apprenticeship route so that I could benefit from gaining a qualification, earn money and get experience in the work environment all at the same time.
What qualification will you receive at the end of your apprenticeship and how often do you attend college?
I will gain an ITQ Level 3. I go to the training centre every Wednesday afternoon and once a week my course tutor comes to my workplace to conduct on-the-job assessments and observations. She also speaks to my manager and colleagues and gains feedback on my work and development.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to start an apprenticeship?
Definitely, do it! It is really beneficial and definitely a great route to work. Some general advice I would give is… try and complete your coursework early so that you have time to review it with your colleagues, be punctual, dress smart and work hard!
Would you recommend an apprenticeship to other people?
Yes, I would definitely recommend it as it opens up so many career paths and really gives a good overview of the world of work.
Give us one interesting fact about yourself!
I love playing and watching football and I am a huge Chelsea supporter, I guess this season has taught me resilience!
Customer Service Advisor, Medigold Health
Leanne achieved an SCQF Level 7 in Business Administration in 2017, via the apprenticeship route at Medigold Health in Glasgow (formerly AbleMed Health).
What made you choose the apprenticeship route?
After finishing school, I really felt like I was ready for the working environment. I wanted a new opportunity and a different path than the education route so chose to do an apprenticeship. I wanted to learn and be trained as well as working and earning.
What support did you get from your colleagues?
My colleagues were very supportive throughout my whole apprenticeship. They helped to train me up in everything that I needed to know and they also contributed to my coursework by providing testimonials, comments and feedback. My manager was very helpful and set me challenges and goals to achieve by agreed dates which really helped develop my planning and prioritising skills.They all took their time to provide me with help, advice and support and really made me feel part of the team.
What key skills did you gain?
One of the main things I have learnt is how to work in a team and contribute ideas and solutions to problems. Dealing with customers was nerve-wracking at first but it has really helped my communication and customer service skills. I have also gained knowledge of lots of different systems and processes including data protection and the importance of this in an Occupational Health environment.
You won Glasgow’s 2017 Business Modern Apprentice of the Year Award (Congratulations!) – How did that feel?
It was really exciting! I felt incredibly proud that all my hard work had paid off and I was recognised. My colleagues were really excited for me too.
Did your apprenticeship help you gain a job?
Yes, definitely! It is really hard to get a job at this age and there is so much competition, so going down this route really opened up doors for me. I was delighted to be offered a full-time job by Medigold Health at the end of it.
Would you recommend apprenticeships to others?
Definitely. It has really benefited me and is a great start to work when leaving school. It gives you lots of opportunities and the ability to improve and develop yourself.
Tell us one of your memories of your first day
*Giggles* I was asked to make coffee for my colleagues which may sound like an easy task but I had never actually made coffee before! I had to shut the kitchen door and call my mum and ask her what to do! Thankfully Mum answered and I made a nice round of drinks. So I guess my apprenticeship has taught me some other skills too!