apprentice system programmer at RBS

Start Date:
Programme Type:
Apprenticeship - Intermediate Level (Level 2)
£1,136 monthly
Review Date:
February 2017

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1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:


I'm an apprentice Sys prog for a support team so my day to jobs vary every other day I am help desk where I answer the phone and any emails, if something comes through I alert a member of my team they'll solve the issue and explain to me how they did so

2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?


I have a far better knowledge of mainframe and TSO, while I feel the training from QA is mostly going over information I already know, in RBS I've gained many new skills one such is that I am a very shy person and suffer from anxiety often and I've been supported and encouraged to branch out more and help build my confidence

3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?


I find that RBS was slightly disorganised at first my team had been given no real support or information before being given 3 apprentices, they have since risen to the occasion but I feel the addition of anymore apprentices would strain them further than they'd be able to cope, I did expect to be able to work as soon as I started but there is a lot of governance around the mainframe

4. How valued do you feel by RBS?


I feel valued by my team and my manager but as a whole there are some negative feelings towards apprentices, there was a CTO call where a rather unfair comment was made suggesting if apprentices were not contributing to their teams by the end of the apprenticeship then they should be let go, if this was the policy then I would have been fired months ago it has only been recently that the team has found work to give and I have become an asset

5. How well organised/structured is your programme?


while at the start it was quite disorganised my team have striven to create roles for me and to help me develop my skills in various areas such as interpersonal skills, presentation skills and programing languages. An in house REXX course was organised for a few apprentices who use it day to day

6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?


I feel QA are very disorganised the classes are not tailored and their priority seems to be to get as many people through as possible not the quality of the education, the only thing they have been useful for is getting the foot in the door to RBS where the most of the training happens on the job

6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?


I have regular one to ones and my team are always available to answer questions and to help with anything from essays to mainframe questions and the whole team are extremely supportive they are heavily invested in us and want us to do well, any issues I've had I've spoken to my Line Manager and he's been extremely helpful, I had a medical issue that resulted in me having to take some time off and he was extremely accommodating

7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?


the salary is very generous and more than covers any of my needs, RBS also offer a no interest travel loan to buy a yearly train ticket so it works out cheaper each month and comes straight out of your wages, they also offer a various benefits that you can opt in to such as dental, health insurance and disability

8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?


there are often company events such as the tech challenge where we were given resources to come up with an idea to cut costs in the bank through digitalisation, there also events such as tech stock where small company's have booths where you can learn more about products that are new and can possibly be implemented into the bank

9a. Would you recommend RBS to a friend? *


9b. Why? *

While I would not recommend QA RBS have been extremely supportive and want us to succeed and grow they have invested a lot of time and money to train me in the skills I need for my department they've never made me feel like I'm a burden to them more an asset I feel welcomed and not like a student at all

10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to RBS? *

when applying to RBS I would not recommend going through QA the application process may be easier but the training and mentors are a less good, I'd have liked to be told that work does come even if it takes 6 months and not to become complacent just keep asking and don't let anyone forget about you as it's not that they don't care it's that they don't know you have no work they may assume that someone else has given you work

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