Apprentice of the Month - September
Our Apprentice of the month is Ifraz. He is an Assistant depot manager at Enterprise Flex-E-Rent. Enterprise Flex-E-Rent supplies a range of cars, light commercial vehicles and HGVs, including refrigerated vehicles and accessible transport under short- and long-term agreements to UK businesses from 28 locations in the UK.
Ifraz is completing the Pareto Team Leader Level 3 Apprenticeship. This apprenticeship is uniquely designed to deliver the core competency requirements in Leading and Managing People. Since 80% of the learning is undertaken on the job, relevance and productivity for employers is optimised.
Why did you decide to go ahead with the apprenticeship programme?
This apprenticeship was presented to me whilst I was a Junior Customer Representative within the team at Enterprise. I wanted to do it as I agreed with my manager that this would be a great chance to upskill and help towards my career progression pathway.
What areas of development did you see the programme meeting for you within your role/responsibilities from where you started?
I felt that my ability and confidence to communicate with people every day was something that I wanted to develop further. I anticipated that the programme would significantly help with this and would go on to instil more confidence in a leadership role in the future. Having been with Enterprise for 12 months, I felt that this foundation and core knowledge was starting to establish itself and I was excited to build on this.
What were your perceptions of doing an apprenticeship before starting on this journey?
Originally, I thought it was going to be more practical and hands on in content and approach. However, I was really happy to realise that it was theory based and felt this struck the perfect balance between the practical fulfilment of my role and responsibilities and supporting study. The theory based programme filled in many gaps in terms of this side of the learning.
How have these changed since starting the course?
I have really enjoyed the fact that multiple learners from different companies were on the course and I was able to interact and share insight/gain knowledge from these sources whilst in training sessions. I also enjoyed the 1-2-1 mentorship and responded really well to the tasks – the distinction I gained is indicative of this!
What have been your biggest learning points from the course?
I have really applied the knowledge that I learnt by implementing it in my pursuit for my most recent promotion. I focused a lot and really retained my skills on communication styles – and it was really easy and enjoyable. I can now understand how to communicate with different interlocutors – whether that be with my own team members, customers, or line manager etc. I felt that the course really developed my confidence and communication skills in this area and that I now have a really great understanding of effective communication to realise the desired objective.
How would you describe your experience of doing this qualification?
The experience was really motivating, eye-opening and resourceful for me in my role and in gaining promotion within the business. Jade, a current live learner on the same standard, is working closely with me to realise her best potential whilst on the course. She is following in the same steps and I am almost a “lighthouse” figure and example within the team currently.
What impact has the course made on your development and career?
After completing the standard last year and for the last 8 months I have been working towards my promotion. I have applied all the knowledge and skills I have acquired and feel that the Apprenticeship has absolutely directly impacted the result in securing my new managerial role. I can speak really highly of the content and also the Skills Coaches.
What impact has the course made to your confidence?
I can now confidently set my own pace and tone when communicating and managing my team. I feel that the group sessions really positively contributed towards developing my confidence and generally upskilling.
Having completed the course, what is next for you?
I will continue to seek further promotions and encourage those around me to do the same in order for my team and business to grow. I would look to potentially do some further learning in the future when I have settled into the new role and understand my responsibilities thoroughly.
What advice would you give to anyone else thinking of doing an apprenticeship?
It is really important to commit to the programme and see the full process through as there is so much to be gained. Really immerse yourself in it and get involved. Jade is really benefiting from my previous experience on the standard, and this in turn will again help further learners in the future. The self-learning and opportunity to discover so much about your personal strengths and challenges is immense so take full advantage of this. The main aspect here for me has been all about confidence, communication skills and general sector knowledge and understanding. I had the promotion in sight and really applied myself to get it. I believe this programme will encourage everyone to take on the extra responsibility and get a really good understanding of exactly what is required of you to do well. This standard will help you rise to the occasion if you allow it to.