1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am currently on a apprenticeship with the civil service working in a programme management office within HMRC. My daily tasks consist of creation and assurance of programme reports, attending programme meetings and feedback to the team, challenging report information with the work streams, issuing reports for completion, creating and updating programme risks and interacting with the work streams to keep reports, risks and plans up to date. Internally I interact with my team members throughout the day and work together to ensure the completion of our reports on time. As well as this we work with the work streams to assist with their project planning and to challenge the information we're provided from them. Externally we also have plans for suppliers to the business such as Capgemini. Therefore we interact with the contacts from these areas also to make sure our programme plans, risks, issues, dependencies, assumptions, constraints and decisions are impacted accordingly. I am responsible for ensuring the work stream plans are validated and the information we are provided with is consistent throughout. I am also responsible for issuing reports with deadlines and ensuring we receive the completed version on time. Other responsibilities include arranging the meetings need to fulfil our requirements and quality assuring the reports we receive as well as the responsibilities previously mentioned.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I am currently undertaking my Level 4 HNC and NVQ in business administration. In work I have massively developed project management skills. I have also developed my communication skills through work and I think this is something which can also assist in personal development. I have developed my IT skills through the tools used in work each day.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I enjoy the work we do as it is something which benefits people and their every day lives. The team I work within is situated in a comfortable environment everyone is easy to talk to and you can trust your colleagues with both personal and professional matters. Outside of work the team meets up and books events and this massively improves relationships in work also. I enjoy the programme more than I anticipated as the environment can be quite relaxed at times while still getting the work completed.
4. How valued do you feel by Civil Service?
We have regular "keep in touch" meetings with my manager where we discuss progress, this does make you feel valued as you can see how you are assisting the team. Emails of thanks are received regularly from the team and the people I work with outside of the team for tasks completed. As well as this colleagues do ask for assistance with work or understanding of a subject which also adds to feeling valued.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Now I am in the programme it is very well structured, I receive all the support I need and know where to go if I require anything. The induction process however didn't seem to be well organised and wasn't communicated well. This is something I know a lot of apprentices in my programme experienced. However I have also seen how this is being improved due to our feedback for the following induction process.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I have regular meeting with both of my tutors. In these meetings everything I require to complete my work is provided to me. I also know how to get in contact with them if I require. I have often emailed my tutors or called and then get back in touch quickly to offer support.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
My manager is very supportive and this is something I have never thought about as the support is always there for work, apprenticeship work and also personally. Everyone on the team is happy to help and if I am working on apprenticeship work I know I can ask advise of anyone on the team.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
My salary is more than I was expecting and covers all my costs.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
I always receive emails about events which are happening and am often encouraged to get involved.
9a. Would you recommend Civil Service to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
I think the experience gained is something that can't be acquired from many other places. I also think that the opportunities which come from the apprenticeship are also unique, for example, there are follow on programme available to ensure personal and professional development.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Civil Service? *
I would advise to just be yourself and confident with what you know. I was expecting to need to already have a lot of knowledge however this isn't the case, you're there to learn and others are aware of this, you aren't expected to already have a complete understanding; this is something which will develop throughout the programme.
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