1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My job role at the moment is the equivalent to a Store Assistant at Aldi. My daily tasks can change depending on what time I am working. If I start before store opening time (eight o'clock) then it will be my responsibility to work the morning delivery and place on the shelves where appropriate. The morning delivery can vary from bread and flowers, produce, chiller, freezer or ambient. If I start after store opening time then I will spend most of the day serving customers at the till. I am constantly interacting whether it is with customers or fellow workers. My main responsibility when working at Aldi is to provide amazing customer service at all times. Other responsibilities include preventing and stopping products becoming off sale, stock rotation and general tidying. There is always something to do at Aldi.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I am currently close to finishing my first year as an Aldi Apprentice and achieving my NVQ foundation level in Retail Skills. Working at Aldi and dealing with customer complaints, queries and general conversation has given me more confidence when speaking and dealing with people. This is my most noticeable improvement since joining Aldi. Aldi sets such high standards and in order to reach these targets it made me a more hardworking and forward thinking person. Working long hours and constantly handling/exchanging customer change has improved my concentration drastically.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
Working at Aldi there is never a boring day. Although due to the high demand and small size of the store days can become very stressful. The team at Aldi are very helpful an always friendly
4. How valued do you feel by Aldi?
Aldi sets such high standards that there is a certain level of expectation at the store. When I first started I struggled to meet the high standards that were in place but I have worked there I while I am able to meet their targets but I still get no recognition for my improvements.
I get more recognition from customers than managers. Sometimes I can work up to 6 days a week and the same standards are set whether feeling fit/healthy or not.
I am always heavily involved and some weeks I can feel overworked.
I always work to the best of my ability but sometimes I am made to feel under valued.
One day I slept late and didn't manage to eat breakfast. I asked if I could take my half hour unpaid break but they told me no. I feel like you are there to do a job and that comes first, before your'e well being.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Aldi try to be structured in everything that they do. Rotas always planned three weeks in advance and store meetings are held often.Training was also very structured. I was given a Store Assistant handbook on my first day complete with everything I needed to know, although I did feel I was thrown in at the deep end at some points. I was given a quick 5 minute induction on how to use the till and then without full understanding I was then on the till serving customers. Meeting with my Learning Provider is also very structured, meetings and homework are set 3 weeks in advance. Task delegation is driven by what customers buy in the shop, so it can not be structured.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
When struggling with my NVQ I know my assessor is only a phone call away and is always able to provide assistant. If he has a few learners who have struggled with a certain module then he will create some notes to help me complete the model. Good support provided throughout regardless of how busy he is what time he is contacted. Overall meeting with the assessor and completing my NVQ was quite easy but fun.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
The amount of support I can receive depends on who's working and how busy the store is. If someone helpful is working they will stop what they are doing to give me a hand when I am struggling. If the store is too busy then they sometimes do not have the time to support me. One module of my NVQ was to complete a partial inventory and my manager was able to spend five minutes of his time to show me what to do, he was very helpful. Most managers at Aldi are eager to see me do well.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
When comparing Aldi apprenticeships to others, Aldi were the best paying apprenticeships in the area. The store is located less than 5 minutes away from my house so travel cost is minimal. I am only 18 so have no bills and my living costs are low. This allows me to spend the money on whatever I want.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Working at Aldi has given me the confidence to achieve whatever I want. There are many opportunities outside of work for me but due to long hours I cannot take advantage of these opportunities. I would like to join a local football team outside of work but working most weekend, I simply do not have the time.
9a. Would you recommend Aldi to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
The team at Aldi are all very welcoming so it gives you the chance to make a new group of friends.I was always quiet in school but working at Aldi has brought me out of my shell. If you want to become a more confident and outgoing person then Aldi is great for this and the money is a bonus too.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Aldi? *
The high targets may seem daunting and sometimes impossible to reach, some days you may feel you are letting people down but you will get better... it just takes time.
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