1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My job title is 'HR Services Apprentice'. My daily tasks include putting together (and chasing) memos for changes in employees contracts along with sorting out any employee absence statements, filing, archiving, collecting and sorting the mail for the whole department and dealing with our Specsavers account. Along with emails to and from both internal and external employees and daily meetings.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have developed many of my existing skills whilst working at 3M, a couple of examples of this would be my IT skills which have improved massively since my training both externally with my training provider and internally with our IT department. In addition to this I have also managed to develop my time management which is a huge part of the working world and has helped me immensely.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I very much enjoy working at 3M, it is a very warm and welcoming place to work. My team are very kind and always more than happy to help me when I need it. My work is always interesting and each day is different which exceeded my expectations.
4. How valued do you feel by 3M UK?
I feel appreciated by my manager, as she constantly thanks me and tells me what I am doing well. I also feel this regarding the whole HR department as they are all very grateful if I do help them out. However, I feel less valued within the company as a whole. This is because all the apprentices are the youngest within the company and therefore I think many employees either don't take our jobs very seriously or take us for granted. In addition to this, the majority of all the apprentices within the company work very hard at their jobs to do their best and complete all tasks given to them with plenty of time which I don't believe it reflected in our pay grade.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Our training program is very well structured in the sense of coursework as both myself and the other apprentices are all very aware of what coursework we need to do and by when. I terms of the training it is slightly less organised. This is due to the information we were given before our training days such as the address and direction to the place in which we were meant to be traveling to. In addition to this, the support given to us by our Assessor is more than we could ask... She is always more than happy to help.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
Going back to my previous comments in question 5, we get a lot of help and support from our training provider. They are excellent with answering emails and calls as well as always being more than happy to help. Especially our assessor who always tries to go above and beyond where ever she can.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I do not believe that we receive any useful support from our Employer (baring in mind we are not employed by 3M, we are employed by SEAC). I feel that they are not interested or willing to help us. It is extremely difficult to contact them which usually take at least 3 tries not to mention that we only see our mentor once every other month for 15 minutes.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
Although I am very aware that our pay here at 3M is much more than the apprenticeship minimum wage, I do not feel that our salary reflects the amount of work and effort that we put into the work place. My travel costs are not too bad as I do not live too far from the office, however I have recently taken out a loan for my car which I just about manage to pay with the salary package I am on however I work another job on my weekends to fun my social life as I could not afford to have one otherwise. I would like to be able to afford to pay my parents rent, as I am now 18 however I cannot afford it at the moment. In addition to this we also have to buy lunch each day which even if I bring my own, can cost a minimum of £3 a day which doesn't include tea or coffee throughout the day at work.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Yes, I think there are a few opportunities outside of work but not many that suit me particularly (as far as I am aware). I know that they have offered a company football tour and some other family actives for young children. So yes, there are many opportunities just not many suited for me that I know of.
9. Would you recommend 3M UK to a friend?
Because 3M is a fantastic place to work and an amazing company to get into. Not just because of its world wide brand and name but also because of the culture of the environment.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to 3M UK?
Due to the size and fantastic branding of 3M, the application process is quite long winded and very particular. So just try your best, be yourself and relax because at the end of the day if you think you are the best person to work here, I am sure that we will see that too.
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