We’re incredibly proud of our apprentices we have here at Athona, so this National Apprenticeship Week we are celebrating some of the great apprentices who have recently graduated, and see what they have learnt during our time on their apprenticeship. Below we meet Amy, our Compliance Apprentice.

What were you doing before you started as an Athona apprentice?

Before I joined Athona in 2019 I had just left school in June and then I went on to get a part-time job in Sainsbury’s until I found the job I really wanted, which ended up being at Athona.

What made you choose an apprenticeship scheme in recruitment?

I knew that going to university wasn’t for me as I’m much more of a hands on learner and was eager to get out into the world of work, but I still wanted to learn and pick up new skills so I felt an apprenticeship was the best option. I also really enjoy working in a people-orientated environment and recruitment is just that. It’s so fast paced, energetic and focused on helping people, and so I thought it would be a good fit for me.

How have you found your apprenticeship at Athona?

I love working at Athona, everyone made me feel so welcome and my team was so helpful when I first joined. I was worried that completing my apprenticeship during the struggles of Covid-19 would really set me back in regards to learning about the company and completing my apprentice work. However, this hasn’t been the case at all, and when the office was forced to close, this gave me time to catch up on my work and everyone was so helpful and welcoming when we came back that I felt like I’d never left.

How has the support and guidance you received whilst completing your apprenticeship been?

Before the pandemic, Athona used to hold regular apprentice meetings for all of the current apprentices to come together and give feedback about how they were getting on. I was able to go to one of these in person before they had to be put on hold, and it was great to get to know some of the other apprentices and as I was new, it helped me to settle in. Even since the pandemic, the support from my manager and colleagues has been great and they’re always willing to help me out where they can. Also, the support from my tutor at The Light Bulb has been amazing, she’s been so proactive in helping me the whole way through my course, I couldn’t have asked for more support.

How did you hear about the Athona apprentice scheme?

I heard about it through a friend who was an apprentice already working at Athona and he told me there was an opening. I thought it sounded really good and like a great place to work, so decided to go for it.

What part of the apprenticeship did you most enjoy?

I enjoyed the apprentice workshops the most. They’re allocated days during your apprenticeship where you learn the content of the course and you meet other apprentices on the same course as you. It’s a great way to see how other people are completing their apprenticeships in a different sector and to meet people in the same position as you.

What has been a highlight of your role?

A highlight for me was being able to get to know everyone in the business so quickly; working on reception gives me the opportunity to interact with most teams in the business every day. Since office Covid rules have come into place my role has changed so much. I now speak to near enough everyone most days (delivering their hot drinks, as kitchens are closed) and it has really helped me understand the different areas of healthcare that people cover, and has allowed me to build the relationships I now have with my colleagues. I love that I get to work with so many people from different teams on a regular basis.

What have you learnt most about during your time at Athona?

I didn’t know half of what I do now about healthcare when I first started. I’ve learnt so much from so many people about how both recruitment and the healthcare system work, and how there are so many different areas within the business that contribute to its overall success.

What advice would you give to others looking to start an apprenticeship?

If you’re eager to learn and want to be challenged, but don’t think college or university is right for you, then I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship. It’s also great if you just want some hands on experience in a particular area before going on to study further. I’ve really enjoyed my apprenticeship at Athona and it has helped my confidence grow considerably. My advice would be to not be afraid to make mistakes because that’s how you learn, and someone is always there to answer your questions, because they want you to do well and get it right. Also, always be ready to take on new things!

Have you recently received your A-Level or GCSE results and are now looking for a job role where you gain a recognised qualification, workplace skills and earn as you learn? Find out more about Athona’s apprenticeships here.