1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Producing statements displaying current assets and returns on investments on financial portfolios for clients. Producing background screening checks known as COSIMA & GOOGLE searches on existing clients and for prospective clients opening accounts to ensure clients are credible and reputable enough to hold an account. Making updates and changes to client profiles including address updates, phone number changes and correspondence updates. Closing accounts that are inactive/ no longer meets minimum investment amount. Producing cash transaction statements for clients.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
One of the main skills I fell I have been able to develop is my communication skills. I have developed this skill by learning how to appropriately communicate via email and telephone and altering my vocabulary and language based upon whom I am speaking to. I have learnt to become clear and concise in my communication to avoid misunderstanding, especially between colleagues. Furthermore, I have further developed my organisation skills. Meeting deadlines is very important to my role in order to keep the team functioning as a whole therefore I have learned to become highly organised by judging tasks based upon their urgency.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I am extremely pleased with how to programme is going so far. Every team I have worked for have been extremely helpful and accepting of any challenges I may face. I have been very supported in terms of study and have been given sufficient time to prepare for my exams at all times. I also feel as if the training has been very informative and has allowed me to become very comfortable in my role very quickly.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The programme is very organised, especially in terms of its exam structure as there is plenty of time to prepare between each exam. The 2 day courses are also placed perfectly to allow for maximum knowledge to be retained just before the exams. However, I feel as if there could be a shorter gap between the three exams as I feel I would be able to complete the exams in a quicker time period if given the option.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I receive plenty of support from many angles in my apprenticeship. I am supported by fellow apprentices, former apprentices from previous intakes, my line manager, desk head and many client advisor assistants on my desk. I have regular calls/meetings with senior employees to discuss workload, study and mental health and am offered support with work related activities at all times by colleagues on my desk who offer 1 to 1 training sessions on certain tasks if required.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
I am always encouraged to take my one day per week study time and do not feel pressured to work through this period no matter how busy the workload may be. I have regular meetings with my skills coach from the external training provider to review my work activities and study techniques. This meeting also involves my skills coach advising on different revision techniques and exam study tips to ensure my revision is successful and appropriate for the exam.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
I feel as if the qualifications enable apprentices to gain a broader understanding to the financial services industry as a whole, enabling apprentices to understand the purpose and importance of the tasks they carry out. Understanding the regulatory environment of the financial industry is key as it encourages apprentices to act with care and diligence when performing tasks and ensuring tasks are completed to the highest standards. Moreover an understanding of products and services offered by the bank is very helpful to understanding the impact of tasks carried out as apprentices.
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 are many social gatherings and events offered at work especially through the many social groups offered to employees. These groups are free to join by all employees and involve many social events to help drive and support various means of equality and inclusion throughout the bank. In terms of sports there are not many opportunities unless privately organised. However, there have been numerous professional networking events that have enabled apprentices to build up a large network of people and meet colleagues from all over the bank.
9a. Would you recommend UBS to a friend?
The staff are all friendly, welcoming and extremely supportive. There are so many opportunities to study and gain qualifications and the bank encourages and pays for employees to attend training to progress careers. The bank encourages self progression and also offers career options over all segments of the bank. The office facilities are amazing and the on site Gym, doctors and dentist are some of the great perks offered by the benefits scheme which is not offered in many other offices.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to UBS?
Make sure you prepare well and research the market and the specific field of work you wish to work in. Having an interest into the financial services industry as a whole and keeping up to date with market activity is very important as it might not impact your job role at the beginning but has a major impact as you progress. Having an open minded approach is key and be willing to learn as much as possible.