Joining AAB as an Apprentice

Robyn shares some highlights of joining AAB as an apprentice, including putting her new knowledge and skills into practice, building relationships, and the independence and responsibility she was given from the get go.

AAB Life Blog

Blog25th Jan 2022

I was one of those people that did not enjoy the school environment, however I had planned to stay on till sixth year to try and make the most out of my education and to give myself some more time to figure out where I really wanted to find myself career wise.

At the beginning of my fifth year at school I began to realise that I wanted to land myself in some sort of role in the finance world, but my plan was still to keep going through school to try and get myself as many qualifications as possible. It wasn’t until I was edging on the end of my fifth year that I made the decision that I did not want to be in school anymore and I was on track to achieve good marks for my Highers, so it felt it was the best time to move on.

I spent a lot of time considering what my next steps could be, and researching my options, but I was struggling to find something that really appealed to me, and I knew that university was not for me.

I then came across AAB’s apprenticeship programme. This really stood out to me as it was a route I had never even thought about, and after a lot of time spent looking into it, I decided this was what I wanted to do. Getting hands-on experience whilst learning and gaining a qualification as well as earning money for myself seemed like there would be no better way to see if this industry would be for me.

One key thing that attracted me to an apprenticeship with AAB was the number of doors it would open for me with regards to opportunities. AAB has such a variety of services which really drew me in as I realised that no matter where I may start within the company, there will always be the chance for me to engage with something new.

The fact that a lot of the teams within AAB work so closely together was a big plus for me as it meant that even whilst focusing on my own work, I would also be able to see how the other departments operated. This would allow me the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the finance world and help guide me on the correct path for where I wanted my future to go.

After finding out my application was successful, I was beyond excited. Having had just left school I was extremely nervous to start as I had never experienced the ‘real’ world of work and meeting so many new people gave me the fear a little bit. However, as I began my apprenticeship these nerves eased very quickly as all the people at AAB were so welcoming and patient with me.

In my opinion, the main highlight for me since beginning my journey here wouldn’t necessarily be all about the working aspects of the apprenticeship and the things I have been learning (although that has been great too) but more about the people I have met and really got to know. Being in a workplace like AAB has been a great place to begin my career as I felt I have always been supported, with the team really making sure I was understanding everything that was being introduced to me, regardless of how busy they may have been with their own work.

Another highlight for me would be actually having the chance to take the things I have learnt and put them into practice. This has allowed me to develop my knowledge and skills to a greater extent as instead of hearing how to do something and moving on I was able to learn skills by demonstrating them. This meant that if mistakes where made, I could see what had gone wrong and learn from it. As they say, practice makes perfect.

A final highlight for me would be the level of independence you are given. Although starting off as an apprentice you may think it might be a lot of being told what to do and being bottom of the line, at AAB I have found it has been the complete opposite. After the initial induction and training I was soon given my own workload to familiarise myself with and take on as my own, giving me a sense of responsibility. This was a huge motivator for me because I felt as though the people working alongside me had trust in my ability.

Looking to the future, I would say I am most looking forward to the relationships I will continue to make and build on. Not only will building on these relationships improve my work ethic but will also allow for opportunities to arise for me within the organisation.

I am also looking forward to building on my personal qualities and skills. Working at AAB has taught me to take responsibility for my actions, how to behave in a working environment and how to be independent in my tasks. All of these factors have helped me build on my confidence within myself and my trust in other people.

By Robyn Anderson, Integrated Employment Solutions

Applications to our 2022 Apprenticeship Programme are open until 1 March. Find out more about apprenticeships at AAB here.

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