Name: Rhys Mabey
Year Started (Apprenticeship): September 2019
Current Position: RCT Source Apprentice
What did you do before starting the apprenticeship?
I was at Aberystwyth University studying Internet Computing and Systems Administration. After leaving university I became a volunteer for Too Good To Waste and then did a work placement at a local job centre while I was looking for a job.
Why did you apply for the scheme?
The opportunity of being paid National Minimum Wage whilst also working towards a Level 3 qualification in Learning and Development was a no brainer for me. Getting paid a good wage whilst also having the opportunity to further develop myself is what makes this scheme so appealing. A few people I know who work for the Council boast about how “Once you’re in, it’s a job for life” so along with this is it all seemed like an exciting opportunity.
What development have you had since being with RCT?
When I started my role, learning to use the system was a challenge. Getting to grips with how to manage The RCT Source site and how to create online modules using Adapt was tricky but I was fully supported by my line manager and there were plenty of resources available to me. After a couple of months my knowledge grew and I became more comfortable in my role. I was given the time to have a play with various features of the site which helped massively in my development. I was given the freedom to try things out and see what I could produce. My line manager now has a plan set out to get me more involved into delivering IT training sessions to Council staff which is something I am looking forward to. The biggest area I have developed in is my customer service skills when answering the phone. I struggled with my confidence but over time it grew and I became more confident at dealing with phone calls. There are plenty of opportunities open to me to aid and develop myself further. I have also received coaching that has given me the tools and tips on how to deliver and manage my time more effectively. The team I work within have many years’ experience in their roles and they are happy to share their knowledge and experience with you to help you develop.
What were the highlights?
So far my biggest highlight was creating the apprenticeship assessments system that will be used for applicants to undergo sifting tests where applicable. I have also run sessions with Cwm Taff Social Care admin staff to teach them how to create courses and seminars on RCT Source. Recently, I have attended an event in Cardiff called “Learning Pool Live” where I got to meet other organisations who have a site similar to the Councils RCT Source. It was a great insight to see how other organisations are going about creating their e-Learning modules and day-to-day running of their sites.
Recommendations to Applicants:
The council is a great place to work that comes with great benefits. Where applicable, you may be working flexi hours which is a great bonus.
Try not to be nervous, you will be fully supported throughout your apprenticeship and everyone is willing to help you. They just want you to succeed and will be on hand whenever you need them, whether it be the EET Team or your colleagues.
To me workplace learning has so many benefits and advantages to it, it offers you the chance to gain good experience and a qualification to bolster your chances of securing a permanent role – whether that be with the council or another organisation. The whole experience will be greatly beneficial to you.
When new opportunities arise in your service area make sure you put yourself forward to help out in any way possible. Explore new things and develop yourselves.
When it comes to the assessments for apprentice roles make sure to read the questions carefully and remember that it wasn’t me that chose them!