At Age UK Medway, we have made a commitment to ensure that we never rest on our laurels. Sometimes the best way for an organisation to challenge itself about how it works and why it provides the services it does, is to open the charity up to scrutiny from new people.
New staff and visitors to the schemes and services are an invaluable source of feedback for us, asking questions as basic as “why do you provide that service?” Or “Why do you care for someone in that way?” Are often the questions that can lead to service innovation and redesign to meet changing attitudes and aspirations of our customers?
To ensure we have a continual source of “fresh eyes” looking at our charity, we have partnered with a locally based training organisation to offer a rolling 1 year programme for 1st year apprentices.
We have now created the post of business administration apprentice, which is based in our head office location, the post is part funded by the apprentice grant scheme. We welcomed our first apprentice after a round of competitive interviews and Emma Barnes began working with us in March 2013.
Emma’s role covers a range of tasks across the organisation, including cash counting, customer service, data collection, general administration, recruitment administration and support for the campaigns manager.
Emma has settled well into the role and is working hard with her training provider to gain her NVQ2 in Business Administration, which we hope, along with her experience gained at Age UK Medway, will set her on a solid foundation for her future career.
“It is great to be able to support a young person in the 1st year of their apprenticeship training at Age UK Medway”, says Justine, finance manager. “Emma has been very hard working, and has learnt new tasks very quickly. She is always keen to ask for the next job, and make herself available to support head office staff in their various roles.”
“It’s good to have a young person so interested in the work we do for the older people of Medway, says John Norley, CEO. “Emma is full of questions, and full of fun, and she has quickly become a real asset to the team. It has been good to see her confidence grow and at the same time, hear her ask the important questions of us, which we crave as feedback.”
As a direct result of the success of Emma’s new post, Age UK Medway is considering recruiting additional apprentices for others areas of the organisation’s work.