1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am coming to the end of my two year apprenticeship at DSTL. I have had such a great opportunity and loved every minute of the diverse and interesting work at DSTL. Every day is different and there is no hierarchy everyone is willing to help regardless of the role or level and I find that extremely refreshing. I get a day a week to study and as an employer they understand that this is a priority as week as on the job experiences. I couldn't recommend working for DSTL anymore if I tried.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have a professional membership and qualification with APM with a PMQ. I have a methodology in Agile which I can use in my role day to day. As well as knowledge and techniques I use daily to change the organisational hobbits.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I really enjoy my programme but have felt QA as a supplier haven't been as supportive as I'd like with 5 different skills coaches in the last 14 months. This has disrupted my course work as it takes a months admin to get a new skills coach ready.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
It has been very well structured, we had 8 workshops which I thoroughly enjoyed being a week long where we learnt each subject areas, with great tutors. We are then given portfolio time also to complete 14 segments and you work out time frames with your skills coach appropriately.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I receive great amounts of support with my PM and Line manager helping me whenever they can with course work.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
I feel it has been all or nothing, I have had 5 different skills coaches so it depends on how hands on or over resourced they ate at QA. Generally due to there heavy case loads I have been working independently.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
The techniques I have learnt within each subject area have helped me no end. I have introduced new techniques and apply them where appropriate to various projects and will do this as second nature now.
8. Are there extra-curricular activities to get involved in at your work? (For example, any social activities, sports teams, or even professional networking events.)
Yes we have various sports team and social groups, which is great to be a part of. We are given every opportunity to go to conferences internally and externally.
9a. Would you recommend DSTL to a friend?
They are a supportive and encouraging employer. They understand how hard work and college life balance is so support you in any way they can.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to DSTL?
Go for every opportunity that comes your way internally as there's a lot available and you won't regret it!