Being an apprentice, I get the best of both worlds; I can achieve a qualification whilst gaining vital work experience.
The idea of the traditional university route never really excited me. I wanted to get into the workplace but also wanted to gain higher qualifications; what could be more fitting than an apprenticeship?
There are so many schemes out there - I didn’t even realise it, but when I saw the Senior People Professional apprenticeship online, I knew that was the one for me! Coming from a big family, I love being around people and wanted to take on a role where I could make a difference for others. I studied business at A-Level, and Human Resources (HR) was, by far, my favourite part of the course; it recognises the value of employees and I felt like I could relate to it. I would like to be in a position where I can help and manage others in the workplace, ensuring we create a safe and encouraging environment that brings out the best in people; this is the reason I decided to pursue a career in HR.
To some, the idea of studying whilst working a full-time job may sound overwhelming. However, during an apprenticeship, you spend 20% of your time doing off-the-job training, meaning that it’s possible to manage your workload and studies. Did I also mention that you get paid a full salary too? Earning while you learn is another great perk of completing an apprenticeship. If I had gone to university, although it would have been great, I would have finished my degree with a lot of student debt and no proper work experience. When I finish my apprenticeship, I will have had years of experience, as well as the opportunity to save money for the future and I will gain a qualification too!
I joined Form3 right after finishing my A-Levels with no experience in HR. This meant that I had to complete the Level 3 HR Support apprenticeship, equivalent to an A-Level, before progressing to the Level 7 Senior People Professional apprenticeship, which is the equivalent of a university degree. The Level 3 HR Support apprenticeship is primarily for individuals that are new to HR and want to seek career progression within this field; I am due to complete it in 2023.
My mentor from the TESS Group (our training provider) and I meet on a regular basis to discuss my progress, which she tracks using my learning diary. My learning diary details all the new tasks I get involved with, so she is able to ensure that I am developing my HR skills and continuing to be exposed to new scenarios that I can learn from. I will eventually have an end point assessment where I am expected to complete a consultative project to showcase all the wonderful knowledge and skills that I have picked up at Form3; they will assess whether I have met the standards of the apprenticeship.
Since joining Form3, I have been exposed to various areas of HR and have gathered invaluable work experience. This, to me, is so important as it has enabled me to develop confidence and fully understand the function of HR and the processes within it. When I joined, I started to help with the onboarding process. Due to the amazing support that I’ve received from colleagues, as well as Form3’s rapid growth, I was able to get the hang of things relatively quickly. After a couple of weeks, I became very familiar with the onboarding process and I am excited to now be in a position where alone, I have been able to onboard more than 50 new employees pretty much independently, and soon I’ll be helping to train our new People Team Apprentice!
Despite being an apprentice, I am thankful to say I am still able to get involved with key parts of the business and look forward to taking on bigger projects in the new year with my team - I am so happy with my decision to join Form3 as an apprentice.
What better a company to begin my career with?