As part of National Apprenticeship Week 2018, we have encouraged our apprentices to share their stories to show how beneficial these programmes can be in the personal development and progression of an individual, and how much of an impact they have on our organisation.
Yesterday, we sat down with our Marketing Apprentice, Elliot and learnt about his experience earning whilst learning at Jobchange (see blog here). Today, we had the opportunity to speak with the Marketing Manager, Lukasz Sitkiewicz and discuss what it is like to manage an apprentice.
Apprentice Diaries-Managing Apprentices
Hi Lukasz, Thank you for sitting down with me today. First of all, can you explain what your role is here at Jobchange, and your involvement with your apprentices?
I am the Marketing Manager, which means I oversee all marketing operations at Jobchange including social media, business liaison, staff management and campaign planning. I am currently running a team of 5, two of which are apprentices.
How lucky! What programmes are your apprentices studying?
I do feel lucky to be able to support in the development of two individuals. I manage Elliot, who is studying towards his Level 3 Digital Marketing and also, I look after our first Degree Apprentice, Charlee who is studying a Bachelors in Business Management.
A team with a very diverse set of skills! Why is it that you decided to get involved with apprenticeships?
Indeed! First of all we wanted to introduce a fresh set of skills to our marketing department, bringing new ideas, creativity and potential for development. We also wanted to find out about the newest digital trends and technology, and have someone with fresh academic knowledge on board.
At Jobchange, we encourage our customers to progress and develop in their careers, this mantra is something we instrument as an employer as well.
How much of your time is dedicated to managing your apprentice?
It takes exactly as much time as to manage some of our other members of the marketing team who are not apprentices: we meet every 2 weeks where we discuss their performance in the last days and also plans for the next 2 weeks. Apart from that we see each other on a daily basis and any challenges are resolved as soon as they arise.
How do you ensure that your apprentices do what you need them to do?
As mentioned before, we meet on a daily basis; we also use online reports and online based software which Elliot and Charlee both use to monitor the progress of each task. Thanks to that I can track progress from any location.
How did you find a course and provider that matched the skill-sets you needed in the business?
For Elliot’s Apprenticeship, we work with Skills Training UK, as we have done for many years. They are a nationally recognised organisation who works with employers to upskill workforces.
For Charlee, as this was a new avenue for us, myself and our Chief Executive conducted an in-depth online research. We looked at different organisations and different locations; however, CMDA at Aston University offered the best package. Initially, we were looking for a marketing related course, however, with time we decided to go for CMDA as it covers much more business related modules and will enable Charlee to help us with other aspects of the business.
How have degree apprentices had an impact in your organisation?
Yes, both Charlee and Elliot have been great additions to the team. Together, they support with different aspects of the business. Charlee has got a very bubbly personality which made her fit in the office very quickly, but also now provides great support to me as a marketing manager and also brings new and fresh ideas.
Elliot helps us to develop our Social Media channels. He quickly became a significant part of the marketing team. Elliot provides us with a great mix of creativity and analytical abilities which is a perfect combination in his role and which enables us to reach all of our Social Media targets.
Do you think degree apprenticeships are worth the investment?
They definitely are, it is an affordable way to up skill your workers to the highest standard. I would recommend it to any company from any sector.