Hello, I Am Lizzie
An apprenticeship appealed to me because I understood the classical University approach and path wasn't quite right for me and I wasn't quite set on what I wanted to do. I found that instead I thrived in a more balanced environment where I was learning while working. For me personally, the benefits of my apprenticeship opportunity outweighed what I could've gained elsewhere. I am able to study and gain my qualifications while growing my experience in a professional workplace. University was heavily encouraged by the Sixth Form I attended and without doing my own research into other options, I don't think I would've done an apprenticeship. Please don't feel like university is the only option and you need to go to succeed- there are so many opportunities out there that will support you in your future career!
Tell us more about your experience
In my role, I get involved with investigations into fraud, money laundering, stolen vehicles, victims of impersonation and seized vehicles, which can be super interesting!
Day to day I may encounter tasks such as checking forms of ID for their legitimacy, reviewing applications for new finance and liaising with police, enforcement, solicitors, recovery agents and internal teams to resolve issues. I am responsible for collating information and presenting this in the form of legal documents and making sure our customers' data is protected.
Every day has been different. I have been lucky enough to experience different networking events and visiting other teams on other sites. Most recently, I have had the incredible opportunity for the team and I to visit one of our manufacturing plants in Oxford. This trip was super insightful into what hard work goes into making our quality products and the technology we have available to do so.
To me, it really demonstrated the company’s consistent flexibility to adapt to our changing world and I feel it really added to my appreciation for the work that goes into all areas of operations.
Changing from an educational environment to one of professionalism and status has been a huge developmental step which has demonstrated to me my strengths and weaknesses. There are so many areas which I wish to develop, grow and improve upon which is personally quite motivating. These last few months I have shown that I can use my transferrable skills to approach problem solving, make logical and reasoned decisions with attention to detail and communicate effectively. I am learning the ability to be diligent with my time and make sure I use the time given to its full advantage. This has demanded me to be incredibly organized and balanced with tasks, making sure I prioritize what is needed and raise or escalate any issues where I may need further support. In addition to this, I am becoming more aware of the position I am in and the requirements from our regulator in financial services. I am navigating and exploring more into my analysis skills and how effectively I can review data or patterns which is something I hope to keep working at to support my apprenticeship.
At my company, networking between colleagues is supported and increasingly encouraged. I work in a close team of about seven people including financial crime analysts and managers, while being part of a wider compliance team. We communicate and work alongside many other internal teams, thus encouraging the importance of networking.
We can learn so much from each other!
My colleagues always show a willingness to support my learning which is reassuring, while I also am offered support from my tutors and peers that attend classes with me.
By investing in apprentices, my employer benefits in having qualified individuals who have learnt internal processes alongside this. Thus, at the end of my apprenticeship, it is likely I will be taken on in a more permanent role after laying the foundations for my career in my apprenticeship.
I would highly encourage apprenticeships because I believe there is something to suit everyone.
Do research into what companies support what qualifications and the different levels that they offer. Think about how you work best and what kind of environment would suit you best. University isn't the only option and in this constantly changing world, there are many different paths that will get you to the same place.