As part of National Apprenticeship Week, we wanted to celebrate how beneficial apprenticeships are as a foundation to developing a professional career for anyone willing to learn.
Our belief is that Apprenticeships are a win-win situation. We get new talent and ideas whilst the apprentice gets a chance to learn, gain real life work experience and earn. Our apprentices tend to use their apprenticeship as a stepping stone to further qualifications as payroll professionals.
Our apprentices’ stories
We asked Mica, currently on her second apprenticeship with us, about her own experiences and also the experiences of some of our other team members who have been through the apprenticeship programme.
An apprenticeship was the right choice for me.
I knew after completing my A-Levels that I didn't want to go to University. I didn't want to just study, I wanted to get into a work environment and learn whilst working!
I first started the company as a Business and Administration apprentice. I was given the knowledge and skills provided by the framework and was then able to apply this to the workplace. I was able to incorporate my own ideas within my role and have constant support from my mentor and colleagues.
After working as a payroll professional in our Education team, the opportunity came to apply for a new apprenticeship role within our Marketing Department. I am now completing a Digital Marketing apprenticeship after seeing how beneficial and suitable to me the qualification will be.
But don't just take my word for how great apprenticeships are! I have spoken to the apprentices to help #BlazeATrail by sharing their thoughts.
Eleanor completed a Foreign Exchange Accounting Apprenticeship after University and is now a Payroll Professional in our Education team.
"I think apprenticeships are a really good way to focus on your time management in a working environment. You have to put time and effort into the framework to learn the basics and knowledge behind the vocation you're putting into practice.
Dataplan has been so supportive throughout all of my training. I don’t think that you can replicate the ‘learning on the job’ environment any other way. The apprenticeship framework is great for giving you the foundations you need for your knowledge that alongside genuine experiences from my colleagues and practice in an authentic setting makes all the difference."
Emily completed a Dental Nurse Apprenticeship before changing her career to become a Payroll Professional.
"I didn’t know what to do after finishing college, I had a few ideas but going to university is a big commitment (financially and timely) therefore I thought the best way to learn something was an apprenticeship as you were learning on the job, gaining a qualification and still earning as you do this.
I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship to someone, especially someone who doesn’t know what they want to do as a career – as I believe you’re not losing anything by trying something new as an apprentice."
Laura completed a Payroll Apprenticeship with Dataplan in 2015. She is now our VERA Project Manager (our education payroll and HR portal).
Laura completed 3 A Levels at College but knew she didn't want to go to University. The classroom learning was no longer for her, the apprenticeship offered by Dataplan focused gave her ‘on the job' learning.
The knowledge Laura gained through her apprenticeship allowed her to progress through the company from administration to a Payroll Professional to a specialised Project Manager.
Tom completed a Business and Administration Apprenticeship before joining Dataplan as a Pensions Administrator.
"The best part about being an apprentice for me would be that you’re not under constant pressure. You have people around you that will help you when you need it most.
If you want to jump in feet-first into work and learn at the same time, then I would recommend doing an apprenticeship, plus it helps you build skills you didn’t know you needed for life. People skills, work ethic, timekeeping. Best of all you meet some brilliant people on the way. "
Pruedence is one of our current Business and Administration Apprentices. She is due to finish her apprenticeship next month!
"I am currently a month away from finishing my apprenticeship which I found on the Government Website (GOV).
I applied for an apprenticeship because after doing a month at college I realised that I did not want to carry on my business studies in that environment when I could apply for a business administrator apprenticeship and learn on the job.
During the past 11 months, I have learnt so many new skills in my job role and in the working environment. I definitely don't regret my decision to leave college and become an apprentice because I am lucky to work with some amazing people who are always there to offer a helping hand if I am ever in need."