1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I work on data reporting for the Ice Cream Now team. This involves updating the Just Eat, Deliveroo & Uber reports alongside our Pizza Chains, Virtual stores and field team data. I maintain these reports and analyse the data as requested, to pull key insights or investigate trends in sales or behaviour of customers.
Much of my work is request based, depending on what hypothesis the leads of the IC Now Team develop and want to prove. I spend a lot of time using Domo (our reporting tool), often I am creating new reports, adding new charts to existing ones or refining details across all dashboards.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
The apprenticeship has given me a proper introduction into working in a business environment. The experience and knowledge I have gained from my role but also my coursework and apprenticeship has set my up for a business career.
Specifically to my role, I have built my data skills in terms of integration, manipulation, handling, transformation etc. I am also capable on a number of tools and interfaces, which are also skills I did not have prior to my apprenticeship.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I have found my programme to be very useful and the coursework generally insightful and interesting. Some tasks have seemed quite basic or not absolutely necessary at times, however I understand that all points should be covered for a complete understanding of Business & Administration. Working alongside my peers has been thoroughly enjoyable and the support I receive from my trainers have been, for the most part very good. Being able to learn while working has been a good balance, which I enjoy far more than learning without the practical work element.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The programme has regular catch-ups with my trainer and my human resources contacts, which has been a good way to track my overall progress. The website used to hold my portfolio and present me with new tasks is easy to use and navigate if I want to revisit old work. Overall, the course was well organised even after covid 19 made communication more difficult. My trainers have been easy to contact and offer good advice whenever I have presented any questions.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I am well supported by my manager and other colleagues. Unilever as a whole is also very supportive, there are many apprentices in the organisation and as such I have felt valued and part of a community. Senior members of the organisation seem sincere when working with apprentices, which means I feel just alike any other employee. My managers and colleagues often ask about my progress on my course and where I may need any support going forwards.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
My training providers organise regular catch-ups, whether it be virtually or face to face. These are always useful to track my progress and set future tasks, also if I need my trainer to review or approve my work these regular sessions allow for that. There have also been several group sessions, which were especially good as the group asked questions and got answers that I had not even considered. As a result of the points I have made, I have been comfortable with my support from my trainer throughout the course.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
While my current qualification is not directly linked to the career path in which I want to explore, it is still relevant. As I mentioned previously, the qualification shows I have an understanding of business and the requirements of a job in a professional business environment. The qualification taught my the basic business structures and processes, which has allowed me to show I am capable and competent to colleagues. In turn this means that people can trust me with work as they know I understand my role.
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.)
There have been numerous events which I have been able to attend, some specific to apprentices which has been a good way to network with people in similar situations to myself. There are also team events like dinners or organisational events like the Christmas party. Otherwise I play football with a large group of people within my office every Tuesday after work and have been offered to take part in other team sports. I have also worked out in the gym with colleagues before at the end of the day.
9a. Would you recommend Unilever to a friend?
I feel truly valued at Unilever by my colleagues, managers and organisation. As an apprentice I have been treated with respect and been pushed to develop but supported when needed. When I talk to people in other companies they often mention how good Unilever is and that they treat employees better than most other organisations, so I am aware to not take this for granted. As a large organisation there is so much opportunity which makes working here exciting, with a number of ways to expand your skills and knowledge.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Unilever?
Make sure to be honest and open. The support you receive should be superb if people understand what you need and what drives you. Always be open to learning new things and working with new and different people so that you can expand your skills across many areas. Get involved with your team and apprentice intake, you will work more effectively with your team if you built that rapport. Also building good relationships with other apprentices is beneficial as it is beneficial for your well-being and should be good fun!