National Apprenticeship Week

JORDAN PATON – PURCHASING ADMINISTRATOR

Why did you choose to do an apprenticeship?
I had previously worked for a national retailer, but there was little opportunity for personal development or career progression. I saw an Apprenticeship as a great opportunity to join a successful business, learn and develop new skills and earn a salary at the same time.

What did you expect…and has it been what you expected?
I expected to learn whilst ‘doing the job’, with support from my manager and colleagues. This is exactly what happened. Their patience, ongoing support and encouragement has helped me to grow into the role at my pace.

As my knowledge and confidence has grown, I have been introduced to other challenges and projects that have pushed me out of my comfort zone. I welcomed the opportunity to get involved in new things and it also demonstrated that my manager had confidence in me to complete the task.

How have you juggled your learning and work effectively?
I have found that the hands-on experience really helps with the learning element of the Apprenticeship. The key for me was working at a pace that I was comfortable with and managing my time effectively.
My manager and colleagues have always been flexible, allowing me to get the balance right. The key to this is open two-way communication.

What now? Next steps?
My Apprenticeship and current role in purchasing have given me a great perspective on business. I have decided to pursue a career in purchasing and am now looking to take my first step on the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) ladder, entering at Level 2.

What are the key benefits you have experienced, thanks to an apprenticeship?
When you learn solely in a classroom you get comfortable with that environment and can only imagine what a workplace will be like.  In an Apprenticeship your workplace is your classroom. Once you’ve finished studying, you don’t have the shock factor of having to get used to new surroundings.

Would you recommend apprenticeships to others? If so, why?
I would certainly recommend an Apprenticeship to people who are able to manage their time effectively and prioritise their workload. An Apprenticeship will help you develop as a person, as well as in the role.  You are surrounded by professional people, with great ‘hands on’ experience to tap into and learn from. Much different to being in a classroom environment.