1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am currently working as a formulation technologist, shadowing those in higher positions than me on projects and formulating for specific products. I also have to check on the stability/product lifecycle on a daily basis.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have learnt a lot of new skills, I have learnt the cosmetic chemistry behind the formulating, and have been exposed to the way a large business like this works with regards products launches etc. I have had an abundance of help in improving myself personally in order to become a better employee.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I love my programme because I have been wholeheartedly supported by everyone and I feel comfortable within the office and with the people I work alongside despite my anxiety.
4. How valued do you feel by Boots?
I feel exceptionally valued by boots as they have rewarded me every step of the way, I have been supported in my personal development where I have desperately needed it and not been shamed in where I have lacked skills.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
My team is new to apprentices so they do seek help in the way they should structure things; everything through college is well done and my workplace do try their absolute best, the only potential issue is that where I don't know I need something, neither do they.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I receive a lot of support from my training provider as they come to see me very often in the workplace and every week in college- they try to fix any issues I may have and put into place good plans of action to put me at ease.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I receive a great deal of support from my employer however as previously mentioned they are new to apprentices so they haven't quite worked out how best to manage certain things just yet. They don't do anything wrong and they certainly try their best to resolve any problems I may have and support me in my development.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
Not very well! In theory it does, but my travel is so expensive!!! It costs me at least £350 a month to travel to work, often more so because season tickets are still more expensive than buying on the day; plus fares keep rising! It also takes me a long time to get into work, via several modes of transport so this is discouraging. In addition to my travel costs I also have to pay £250 for rent and I am trying to save up for a car and a house so it leaves me hardly anything!
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Outside of work there are opportunities to get together for birthdays and leaving dos; sometimes there are meals e.g christmas lunch which was very entertaining! More nights out would be good, but since [This section of the comment has been removed by a member of the RateMyApprenticeship Team because it did not meet our site terms and conditions] left we as apprentices haven't had any social events.
9. Would you recommend Boots to a friend?
I managed to find the Boots apprenticeship by a stroke of luck, in the middle of the night on the government website and it saved me- I was desperately trying to find a science based apprenticeship but they simply didn't exist; not good ones anyway. I felt as though I would end up in accounting, in a job I wouldn't enjoy, but this opportunity rescued me and the potential that I have in the future is outstanding due to the services Boots are offering me.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Boots?
I was vague about my ambitions because I simply didn't know; all I said was that I had a passion for science and knew I wanted this role. I conveyed some authority and assertiveness but also passion and commitment, which is the most important thing.
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