1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My current role is that of a business analyst. As a business analyst, I have to gather the data required for a project and then analyse this based on the requirements we have. Going out and gathering data includes a lot of stakeholder management as I have to go out to contacts in areas all across the bank and request data from them. Without the appropriate data, it would be very hard for a project to progress.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Along with the level 4 higher diploma in project management I am gaining as part of the apprenticeship, I have developed a range of personal and professional skills along with gaining new skills. The main skills I have developed are my communication skills which have been developed based on gaining confidence, which this apprenticeship has helped with. I have also attended numerous internal training courses to aid in my knowledge development around project management.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
The apprenticeship programme itself is very interesting and will give me a really good background when I roll off the scheme. The company are very supportive of apprentices which is always refreshing to see. The team I am within currently are making my time very enjoyable as they are very supportive as a work team and are also very friendly on a personal basis.
4. How valued do you feel by Lloyds Banking Group?
Lloyds Banking Group appreciate apprentices as a whole and are really driving to push apprenticeships out there and make them a respected alternative to college and university, which is really great to see and be a part of. On a personal level, it can sometime seem as if apprentices are taken for granted slightly and used for all they are worth. From my current perspective, I do not necessarily feel valued by Lloyds Banking Group as a whole group but my local team make up for that as they are very appreciative of the work I do.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The specialist training part of the apprenticeship is very well structured and organised and is really useful and valuable. The foundation side of the programme, from what I have experienced so far, is slightly less structured and even less organised. From my experience with the foundation side of the programme so far, I have also found no value or interest. There is also a lack of structure and organisation around the placement side of our apprenticeship.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
On the specialist side of the programme, there is full support and any queries I have are promptly resolved. On the foundation side of the programme, any queries are responded to few and far between and often we have to communicate this to the rest of the apprentices ourselves. From the assessment point of view, I am finding I have to suit my tutors needs rather than him suiting to my needs which I would have initially expected.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
As an apprentice, any team I am in is fully supportive of me taking time out of my week to complete apprentice activities and having days out of the office where necessary to attend apprenticeship events. In my previous team, the only issue with support I had was that as my manager didn't understand the scheme they weren't able to support me with anything apprentice related and also didn't know how much work to give me so as not to overload me with the apprenticeship activities.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
As an apprentice, the salary is very good but as a permanent colleague of the bank, it is not so appealing. My current role is two bands higher than the band I was employed at, as a result I am expected to do the amount of work of a colleague two bands higher than me and complete all of my apprenticeship, whilst only being paid the salary that I was employed at. Although working in a role higher than my band is a great opportunity, it feels as if the bank are taking advantage of the fact I am an apprentice.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
There are endless amounts of opportunities outside of any colleagues day to day role on a professional and personal level. The group particularly promote volunteering and fundraising and there are numerous opportunities to get involved in both fundraising and volunteering activities on a weekly basis. There are also different clubs you can get involved in for leisure activities as well as more professional events and classes.
9a. Would you recommend Lloyds Banking Group to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
I would recommend Lloyds Banking Group to a friend as they are a great company to work for based on both their appreciation of their colleagues along with having a great reputation and image within the community outside of work. The group really encourage colleagues to take up opportunities above and beyond their role and also promote fitting your professional life around your personal life, which is a really good thing for an employer to drive.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Lloyds Banking Group? *
The biggest piece of advice I could give anyone applying to Lloyds Banking Group, would be to be yourself. Although it is cliché, it is very true in terms of the application and assessment process of new colleagues. Lloyds Banking Group look for the right people and the right personalities, not just the correct experience and qualifications. If you are the right person for the job, you will get it over someone who has all the experience and qualifications desired but doesn't have the correct traits.
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