1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am an administrator in the employee benefits team. I handle a lot of the raw admin tasks e.g. post, scanning etc. However I have progressed onto more complex and independent work directly with clients as I have become more confident with the work. Now I handle a lot of customer queries and information requests as well as longer term projects such as updating systems.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have developed my skills with all of the Microsoft office programs and my general organisational skills have developed a huge amount. I have picked up new skills in relation to business interactions e.g. business e-mails, phone calls and letters. As well a much better understanding of employee benefits and tax as a whole.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
It was initially a culture shock changing from a relaxed college environment with people my own age to a workplace where almost everyone else is older. But now I have adjusted to it and am able to connect with people I previously would not have shared interest with.
4. How valued do you feel by Grant Thornton?
I feel I get good recognition for my work, particularly in areas I wasn't strong in when I started. Despite being an apprentice I don't feel like I am negatively treated any different than my colleagues, I don't feel like I am given unfair amounts of work or excessive amounts of purely admin work e.g. photocopying.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Training I have had from Grant Thornton has always been very good and they are understanding when I need to take time out to complete coursework. However when I have training days at college I feel that the work I do doesn't really relate to my work as it is too broad.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
The support from my training provider (city gateway) has been adequate, but I have a general feeling of a lack of confidence in their organisation. However this may have been due to a tutor I had at first being disorganised as my current one is very good.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I cannot think of more ways my manager and team could help to support me. When I first joined they helped me to get to know people in the office, my mentor is always willing to answer questions I have and my manager has helped me to look at my potential opportunities after my apprenticeship. I am also always invited to business events and meetings to help me get to know the world of work.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
I have to travel particularly far to work and as such it is quite expensive but despite this I still feel I have a good amount of spending money. I feel that for a first (proper) job I get paid pretty well.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
There are opportunities to go to talks and seminars almost every week as well as fun company events such an intra-company football tournament which Grant Thornton pays for the accommodation.
9a. Would you recommend Grant Thornton to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
There is a very friendly and understanding atmosphere around the office and I am yet to see any display of people not getting along in the 8 months I have been here. Plus their support network means that even if you don't stay with them, they would be a great stepping stone to something else.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Grant Thornton? *
Avoid being a robot in the interview. Since starting I have seen how important it is that you are compatible with your work colleagues if you want to enjoy working. Showing that you are a friendly person who is willing to learn will be much more valuable than cheesy pre-made answers.
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