Venn Group prioritises the learning and development of our employees and encourages them to reach greater heights of success. Over the past three years we have benefited greatly from the apprenticeship levy which combines on-the-job learning and classroom-based study.
As part of the National Apprenticeship Week, we heard from Lucy Worf, HR Advisor, about her experience of completing an apprenticeship.
What made you decide to undertake a qualification using the apprenticeship levy?
CIPD qualifications are well-sought after in the HR profession and it’s also important for my own personal development. Achieving the Level 5 HR qualification by the apprenticeship route involves a greater amount of practical elements than the direct course, so I’m able to take on a lot more responsibility in my role to gain the required experience and become qualified. By the end of the apprenticeship I will be able to support business leaders with people-management and business strategy.
What new skills and experience have you gained so far?
I’ve learned a lot through shadowing and mentoring from my manager Kirsty, the Head of HR, as she talks me through areas I haven’t been involved in before. There is also regular classroom-based learning, and it’s been helpful to learn from other people on the course and understand how their organisations operate. In terms of particular areas, I’ve recently been involved in reviewing our employee benefits and helping out with recruitment within Business Services. You’re always learning in HR on account of changing legislation, trends and employee expectations.
What is the most challenging thing about studying?
It can be challenging to juggle everything that’s going on; I have to write assignments and get involved in new areas of work alongside all that I usually do as part of my job, so keeping on top of time management has been vital. I haven’t found any of the particular responsibilities too much to manage as Kirsty has been very supportive throughout, but the assignments have certainly been the most challenging part so far!
What has been the most rewarding part of the experience?
I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to work closely with the management team and understand more about how the business operates; there are a number of things involved that I wouldn’t have considered before. It’s been rewarding to have a greater role in decision-making across the business and learning more about how those decisions are arrived at. It’s particularly reinforced what I’ve learned in classroom-based study about business strategy and the role of HR.
What advice would you give to others considering studying using the apprenticeship levy?
It’s important to be open and flexible, putting yourself out there to gain new experiences and making the most of opportunities you’re given. You will need to be organised with your time to keep on top of the assignments alongside your normal workload. It will help greatly to be self-reflective in thinking about areas for improvement and being strategic in taking on experiences that will allow you to meet the criteria required for the course. Ultimately you have to be dedicated, organised, and want to learn more; as long as you’re willing to put the effort in, it will only be a positive experience.
We are proud of the dedication and contributions of everyone who has undertaken an apprenticeship with Venn Group: Bolu Williams, Josh Lawrence, Justin Dankyi, Laurence Appiah, Lucy Worf, Nora Streanga, Roderick Byatt, Skaiste Simonaviciute, Henry Osei, Yusuf Karapinar, Lori Yeomans and Irma Dzikaite.