1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am a team administrator within the national communications team at Grant Thornton. On a daily basis I manage diaries, schedule meetings, book travel arrangements, collect PR coverage, support the team and general admin.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have gathered a very good understanding of OutLook and Excel during my time at Grant Thornton. I have also learnt how to write out an email and have improved my telephone skills and feel I have improved on my confidence and dealing with other people.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I enjoyed it very much, and would definitely recommend an apprenticeship at Grant Thornton. I feel I could have enjoyed it more if there were more people who were my age that I could relate to. This apprenticeship has exceeded all my expectations and it has been a very enjoyable experience.
4. How valued do you feel by Grant Thornton?
It was a very small admin role within a small department, so sometimes it felt like the work I was doing was trivial and could have easily been done by someone else. But there were also times where I have contributed to large developments within the firm, and have received praise and recognition from it (such as event co-ordinating).
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
I feel that overall it was very well organised, but there would be some times during my NVQ assessor visits where I wouldn't fully understand what I was supposed to do, or communication between assessor and apprentice wasn't very good. I also feel like we were not briefed enough about what was required of us in our coursework and expectations. But this was NOT to the fault of Grant Thornton. The department was very encouraging and I often had catch-ups where I would tell them what I was working on, but there wasn't very much interaction apart from that.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I received a lot of support from my colleagues who would help me with my coursework at times in which I didn't understand, and my second assessor also challenges me and pushes me to get my work done before the deadline.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I did not receive very much support from my employer. My manager was aware of what I was doing, but the only interaction she would have between me and my coursework was telling me what I should do and when, without giving me much encouragement. This didn't motivate me and sometimes was quite frustrating.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
The salary was very generous for an apprentice, and met all my costs. As I am still living with my parents, the only reason to spend money was on social events or travel, the rest I have saved for the future.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
I was not aware that there were any opportunities (to do with Grant Thornton) outside of work times/hours. The only time I would relate work to my free time, would be when I did coursework at home or sometimes worked on projects that I felt I was falling behind on.
9a. Would you recommend Grant Thornton to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
It is a very good place for a first job, and the working environment at Grant Thornton is very friendly and helpful. It's a medium-sized business so it wasn't so large that you didn't get any attention, and it wasn't too small where you would be smothered. You had your own freedom to develop in your own way and style and was able to receive support when needed.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Grant Thornton? *
Make the most out of it. Many people would have loved to have this experience and you are lucky enough to be working in the 5th largest accountancy firm in the UK. Do not take help and support for granted and always jump at opportunities.
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