1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I work in the Workplace Services department of Unilever. My role is mainly Project based so I support project managers with the running of local building projects. So far, I have also managed a few of my own small projects relating to Health and Safety induction. My daily tasks involve emailing service delivery directors and managers to get updates on their projects and also once a month analysing data sent and uploading the projects status' on our Project Management programme. I also have regular meetings with members of my team regarding work I am doing for them. I split my time between work and apprenticeship coursework.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have learnt a lot since starting this apprenticeship. I have had training in Excel, Power Point and some Unilever software and feel very confident in these now. My organisation skills have improved which is important as I receive quite a few emails during a day and these need to be put into the correct folders sop they are easy to find. My communication skills have also improved and I am more confident in talking to people and asking questions if I am unsure.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I am really enjoying my programme. I get get along very well with my team and felt welcomed when I first joined. It is quite a relaxed environment which I like and the hours are flexible. All the teams on my floor work really well together and so there is a lot of interaction with different people throughout the day. I am managing my coursework well, and so don't feel stressed about falling behind in that.
4. How valued do you feel by Unilever?
I feel valued by my manager and team and feel that I am really contributing with the work that I am doing. My manager is always giving me feedback about the work I am doing as are other members of my team that I am supporting. Likewise my assessor also regularly praises me on the standard of my personal statements. If I mention to my manager that I would like to become more involved in a certain project then she will do all she can to make that possible. I do feel that in a small way, i am contributing to the success of Unilever.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The application process and first few weeks of our apprenticeship were very well structured. Each day followed on nicely from the one before and the induction week was a perfect introduction to Unilever. On my fist day I was greeted by my manager, given a tour and introduced to the team. Having one to one meetings with my manager every week and with my assessor every 6 weeks helps me to feel supported and that I have different people I can talk to. My workload wasn't too much at first and so I was able to ease into the job before becoming too busy. The connection between coursework and actual work is good and so the whole programme is very well structured around what each individual does.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I have face to face meetings with my assessor every 6 - 8 weeks and can contact her via email in between this time if I need to. If I have a problem i can easily talk to her and she is very supportive and helpful with the coursework that we have to do. I am enjoying the coursework side of the apprenticeship and learning a lot form it.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I have weekly one to one meetings with my manager where we discuss the work I am currently doing and how my programme and coursework is progressing. This gives me an opportunity each week to let my manager know if I am having any problems/issues or if my work load is too much or not enough. I feel my manager is very approachable and I can go to her to talk about anything.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
I live at home with my parents so don't have many outgoings. I do pay rent and have a car to run which I drive to and from work everyday. The salary more than covers the cost of petrol rent and any social activities throughout the month.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
There are opportunities to attend training and some company events such as conferences. I attended a volunteering day at the start of the apprenticeship which happens annually and I found very rewarding. Within my team we have regular social catch ups after work.
9a. Would you recommend Unilever to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
Unilever is a great company to work for and has a relaxed environment and flexible working hours. Management are very supportive of their employees and there are always training opportunities in all areas if you want to build on or gain new skills.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Unilever? *
During the application process and assessment days, don't be too shy and make sure you interact with everyone and talk about specific examples of what you have done in the past. If you only have a small workload or feel that you could do more speak up as managers really like to see you being enthusiastic and eager to do and learn more. Embrace all opportunities and training to gain as many skills and experience as you can over the course of the apprenticeship.
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