Starting an apprenticeship can be an exciting yet daunting prospect for many. You’ve applied for the vacancy, been interviewed successfully and are now on your way to spending the next year or more on your apprenticeship programme. If you’re in this situation, then congratulations! An apprenticeship can be a great way to earn a wage whilst gaining invaluable work experience and qualifications. Starting an apprenticeship is similar to starting any new job; you’ll be working with other employees in a specific work environment and will have plenty of new things to learn. In this article, we cover six tips for new apprentices who are just starting out on an apprenticeship, to enable you to best set yourself up for success in your apprenticeship programme.
It may sound like an obvious first point, but the importance of punctuality should never be underestimated. Whether it’s for an apprenticeship or any other job, turning up around ten minutes early in the first few weeks or so can leave a good impression of reliability with your employer. It’ll also make it easier for you to get to work on time if you allow enough time for any possible delays on the way to work.
Smash the onboarding process
You won’t be expected to know everything when you begin in your new role, which means that you’ll probably have an induction or onboarding process in the early stages. Use this as an opportunity to gather as much relevant information as possible, including the main work duties expected of you, your expected conduct as an employee as well as getting to know your work colleagues. It might also be a good idea to familiarise yourself with any company policies or employee manuals that are available.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Starting out in the beginning means that you may find some aspects of your new role to be confusing. If so, don’t be afraid to approach your employer or supervisor for help if it’s needed. They’ll be expected to play a key role in your training if you’re joining them as an apprentice, so they should be on hand to provide you with any support that you need. An alternative could be to approach your tutor for help if you take part in any off-site training at a local college or training centre.
Familiarise yourself with the syllabus
As an apprentice you’ll be undertaking an apprenticeship program from start to finish, in which the end result will be a professionally recognised qualification. It might therefore be a good idea to understand the key requirements of the syllabus and to find out what the main areas of study will be with your training provider. This can help to plan your study time more effectively whilst helping you to prepare for your end-point assessment.
Get to know others
From your colleagues to your tutor or trainer, it’s better to get to know the people you’ll be working with at an early stage of your apprenticeship. They’ll be the ones you’ll be working with throughout your time as an employee, so make sure you learn their names from an early stage and project yourself in a positive and approachable way.
What do you hope to gain from this experience? Do you see yourself progressing within the company you’re with, or do you fancy the idea of changing jobs or going to university after your apprenticeships at an end? Considering these questions now will help you to realise what you value about your current apprenticeship, as well as what you need to do now to meet your long-term goals. It’s good to keep your options open, so there’s nothing wrong with having lots of ideas in mind for your long-term goals.