Being an apprentice at YPO
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Being an apprentice at YPO

20 October 2016 By Kathryn Dickinson - Quality Assurance Apprentice

YPO Apprentices

Kathryn Dickinson started as an apprentice at YPO in 2015 on a two-year scheme based in the Quality Assurance Team.

My first few weeks here at YPO were strange as it was my first proper job since college. I spent three days completing my induction where I was told how to do my time sheets, what the role would include and what YPO was as all about as, I always thought it was just selling stationery to schools. 

A few months down the line I started to settle in really well, adjusted to working life and learnt more about what I wanted to do with my career.  I’ve been lucky enough to be able to do job shadowing in many different departments such as HR, Contracts, Finance, Stock control etc. so from this I’ve been able to get a better look at YPO from different areas. 

As part of my apprenticeship, I’ve been able to learn new skills that I may have not got the opportunity to do.  Part of this is working on Reception and Post Room training which might not seem that challenging or complex but the Reception training specifically has helped my confidence. Answering the phones from external customers was something I’d previously dreaded!  With Post Room training I went around the company and got to know people’s names and faces which really helps when you’re new.

Something I’ve had the opportunity to do is get involved in different charity events.  I’ve helped raise money for Macmillan by taking part in the coffee morning; Candlelighters I held a raffle and went around collecting money by selling pens and wristbands; Children in Need I dressed as Pudsey Bear and sold raffle tickets to staff and took donations and also helped with organising the family fun day of which I will be helping with again this year.

I’m currently studying my Level 3 Business Admin NVQ as part of my apprenticeship, in which I’ve learnt about creating bespoke business documents, principles of leadership and management and various communication models plus much more. I have regular meetings with my NVQ Assessor who goes through my work with me and signs off on my units. My role consists of general everyday admin duties, but part of being in the Quality Team I have learnt about product safety, testing and safety data sheets which before I started, I knew nothing about. 

YPO for me was the best place to start my working life; all the staff are helpful and friendly, from the warehouse right up to the directors. Your managers and team are always pushing you to be better, learn new skills and find out what job you want. The support you get is amazing and I don’t know any other company that has an apprentice scheme like YPO’s. It is something I would definitely recommend to anyone leaving school, college or anyone who wants to learn and earn at the same time.  YPO also has a lot of benefits it offers to its employees such as the cycle to work scheme, car leasing, opportunities to join different healthcare plans and a pension scheme which at 16 when I started I didn’t think much about and was something I hadn’t really planned - but now I have already started saving for my future. 
Categories: YPO

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