1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My Job Title - Customer Team Member (Food retail). Daily tasks vary depending on the shift time. You get to build relationships with a great team of people not just inside one store but also across other stores as well. You meet loads of local people and get to know your community really well. Along with serving customers some of the basic things I have to do include; reducing stock, stock counts. building product knowledge, promotional changeovers, price changes and shelf stacking. As I get deeper in to my apprenticeship I will learn a lot more about the different aspects of what goes on behind the scenes such as the in-store bakery, logistics and store plans.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have just started out on my apprenticeship so at the moment I have only learnt the basics about being a customer team member. A number of colleagues have taught me different processes in store and continue to offer up bits of their experience and expertise. What I can say is they have great management and support network developed especially for you so you can grow in the business.I would also say I have continued to develop some of my existing skills as well.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I thoroughly enjoy working with all my colleagues who made me feel welcomed and comfortable. They do have a great support network and as long as you're willing then I believe you can go far in this apprenticeship. The company is very good to work for, they pay well and are always on the lookout for new talent. So far this apprenticeship has exceeded my expectations, I am not only looking forward to progressing but also building a career with the Co-op
4. How valued do you feel by Co-op?
I feel very valued by the Co-op. The management team have not only given me support but they have made me feel welcomed and comfortable from day one. I feel appreciated and the recognition from the management team is a sign that the Co-op believe in what you're doing. There has also been a little external praise from outside management but as i have just started this course I'm sure there will be more communication in the future.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
At the moment it seems very well organised. They do have great support, with my manager members of my team and my own personal mentor to offer support if I so require. There are a few other Colleagues starting the same apprenticeship around the country in their store respectively and the co-op makes an effort to link us up at different event so we can support each other as well.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
Again I am only just starting my apprenticeship so as of yet this is still a fairly little limited. The training is provided my learn direct who gives me my own personal mentor. A lot of my learning is online so although I don’t see my mentor often I still have access and can call on learn direct to support me if i need any help.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
Again I am only just starting my apprenticeship so as of yet this is still a little limited. The Co-op provide me with a dedicated apprentice mentor and the training provider also provides me with a mentor. This allows me to have support from a wide spectrum of people with my manager, team leaders and colleagues all who are positive about helping me and developing me. If I need any help I have easy access if I need any support.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
Compared to most apprenticeships the Co-op offer a really decent salary. Although it is low compared everyday normal job you have to think of the bigger picture. The Co-op do pay for any travel costs associated with my apprenticeship such as train tickets. The Co-op also offers great colleague package with money off food/insurance/electrical's and also has a great pension scheme. For me personally I live very local to my Co-op and have easy access and the salary more than covers me for what I need.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
As I haven't been with the company long I am still learning about different opportunities i can get involved with. Socially with other members of staff they have and active group who meet up every other month. The Co-op also strive for community activities and helping out in the local community and would encourage all staff to get involved in the local community.
9. Would you recommend Co-op to a friend?
I would undoubtedly recommend the coop because it is a great place to build a career, a place where they offer great support and industry leading learning and expertise. They also consciously care about their staff and the community and want to care and support it as best they can. They also offer great staff benefit and a stable income.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Co-op?
If you’re looking to develop a challenging yet rewarding career then I would highly suggest the Co-op is the place to be. Make sure it is definitely an area you’re interested in and would like to build a career. The application process can be a little lengthy but it will be worth it. First you will have to apply, then will have online tests to complete. You will then need to complete a video interview and last of all you will attend an assessment day. All these things they are looking for your character so be positive, but most of all be yourself!
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