1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am on the Finance Apprenticeship scheme, and as part of this am currently working in Accounts Receivable as a Collections Executive. In my role I manage accounts to ensure the business receives payment from it's customers. Daily tasks include contacting customers regarding outstanding payments and overdue invoices and raising credit notes when customers have paid us incorrectly. I regularly work with our Nestlé Professional business and the sales team to ensure we give customers the best service and that all payments are received. Some of the projects I am currently working on include ensuring billing errors are minimised and switching more accounts to email invoicing in order to minimise the impact of paper invoices on our costs and the environment. I'm also involved in updating our webpages which is an opportunity to do something different, be creative and work more closely with other members of the department.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
As part of this apprenticeship, I am working towards the CIMA Level 4 Diploma in Business Accounting, which will qualify me towards becoming a Global Management Accountant. As part of my job role, I have become much more confident in liasing with customers and have learnt a great deal more about Financial Services and Accounts Receivable as a function and how it contributes to the overall workings of the business. I have also had the opportunity to work with other apprentices and graduates from functions other than Finance, such as manufacturing, quality and engineering. This is a fantastic opportunity to network with others and is another confidence-builder, in addition to broadening my understanding of the wider business.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I very much enjoy being a part of this apprenticeship programme. Nestlé is a fantastic employer to work for - they are very invested in their employees, providing excellent working conditions and plenty of opportunity to develop and get involved in projects that allow you to work towards doing what you really want to do. The team I work in is very friendly and I've made some great friends who I socialise with outside of work. The culture at Nestlé creates a friendly and relaxed atmosphere, but also inspires you to work hard and achieve great things. The opportunity that Nestlé are offering in their apprentice, school leaver and graduate programmes is fantastic, and I'm very excited at the prospect of being qualified at the end of my time here; however, I very much hope to stay and experience working in the wider areas of the business!
4. How valued do you feel by Nestle?
Nestlé invests a great deal of time and money into it's employees, for example through this scheme Nestlé will be paying for the costs of studying for CIMA including travelling costs, in addition to paying me a very good salary. Their flexi-time scheme, whereby you have the flexibility to work your contracted hours as and how fits in best with your lifestyle, makes me feel very appreciated as an employee and shows that Nestlé not only cares about its employees as people, but also shows they put their trust in us. We are also allowed to wear casual dress for work, which again creates a much more fun and relaxed atmosphere. Nestlé offer a great deal of recognition through the objectives that are set, and I often receive praise from my line manager and others in the business when I have achieved an objective or it's been recognised that I've gone above and beyond e.g. when the opportunity to nominate someone for their hard work arises.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Our induction at Rasheligh's was very exciting, allowing us to work with people from across the business and was a fantastic introduction to learning what Nestlé is all about. The support from both my line manager and CIMA tutor is great, and I also receive support through a buddy system. On my apprenticeship programme there is plenty of time to study and you are given days as paid study leave for each exam, allowing you to focus on achieving the best you can!
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
So far, I've unfortunately not received a great deal of support from my tutor as she's rarely available due to having a very busy schedule; however, this is made up for by the support of other apprentices and those who have already completed this qualification.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
My manager is very supportive, ensuring we have regular meetings to check up on my progress and make sure I'm happy with everything that's going on. If I have a problem, there are plenty of people I feel I can go and speak to about it.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
My salary is fantastic for my age and the amount of education/training I'm receiving, in addition to the work experience of my day job! I live very close to work so commuting isn't difficult for me, and college costs are covered by Nestlé, so I definitely have plenty of money left over after daily, living and social costs are covered to treat myself!
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Fitness classes are run a few times a week and there are other events that you can get involved in such as the Christmas Market, which is fun and a good opportunity to socialise with colleagues you may not ordinarily see outside of work.
9a. Would you recommend Nestle to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
As I've mentioned, Nestlé is a great employer who invests in its employees and is offering fantastic opportunites to young people in particular to gain relevant work experience and well-recognised qualifications. In addition, Nestlé is the largest food and beverage manufacturer in the world, so having the opportunity to work for them is really great, and with so many different departments such as marketing, sales, HR, supply chain, finance, in addition to so many business such as Purina, Nestlé Professional, Nestlé Waters etc, who knows where you could end up!
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Nestle? *
*Really try to show your true self and personality - don't put on a front, just be you. *Be confident, but humble - show you are skilled and have a lot to offer where possible, but in group exercises try to encourage others to have their say and listen well; this kind of behaviour will be recognised, and being able to encourage and involve others is a great quality to showcase. *Let Nestlé know you have a passion for the food and drink industry, and that you're excited at the prospect of the many opportunies Nestlé can offer. Nestlé want employees who are driven, want to succeed and want to develop and progess. * Clue yourself up on the business before hand as well; before I started working here, I genuinely didn't know how vast Nestlé really is! *Clue yourself up on the function you are applying to work for; unless you've worked in this function before, your assessor/interviewer won't be expecting you to know everything/even anything at all, but it will look good if you can show you've done some research.
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