Starting an apprenticeship? Here’s a few tips to help you succeed

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It can take time to settle into any new role – with so much information to absorb and new people to meet, it’s natural that you might be feeling a little nervous about it!

To start your apprenticeship off the right way, it can help to be prepared. From making a good first impression to knowing what will be expected of you in your day-to-day role, there are lots of things you can do to make the most of your new position.

Here are some top tips to help you find your feet:

Get organised

If you’re prone to losing items just as you’re stepping out the door, it can help to have everything ready the night before. Prepare your lunch, iron your outfit and place items like your keys and purse together so you can grab them easily on your way out.

Knowing that everything you need is ready for the morning will also help you sleep better, as you won’t have a long list of things to do as soon as you wake up.

Give your new colleagues a chance

Whenever you meet a new group of people, you may find that you don’t instantly get on with one or two of them. However, you need to remember that you’re part of a team and everyone is expected to support one another and get along, regardless of personal feelings or disagreements.

As you settle in, your first impressions of some of your colleagues may change and you may grow to like them. Be patient and give it time.

Put your health first

When you’re working and studying, it’s easy to neglect healthy habits like doing regular exercise and getting a good night’s sleep. Make sure you maintain a balanced lifestyle so that you have plenty of energy to give your best to your apprenticeship. 

It’s important to eat three meals a day and to include a minimum of five vegetables and fruit in your daily intake. It’s also important to stay hydrated – you can do this by drinking at least 8 glasses of water throughout the day.

Go easy on yourself

One of the main reasons people get anxious about starting their apprenticeship is the thought of messing up. You may struggle to remember someone’s name or forget what you’ve been asked to do. In those first few weeks, you may like to have a little notebook with you to jot information down.

If you do something wrong, just think: will it matter in a few weeks or months? If you’re committed to your apprenticeship, this is what’s likely to be remembered, not if you forgot someone’s name after you’ve met them!

 

Prepare for your observations

Your assessor will send a plan through before they visit you, so that you’ll know exactly what they want to observe you doing. By having the plan in advance, you can prepare thoroughly for the assessment. You can print the plan off and have it with you throughout the observation.

It’s a really good idea to write yourself notes to jog your memory through the assessment. If the plan has questions to answer, you could write these out before the visit and discuss the answers at the visit.  By having the plan in advance, you can also query anything you’re not sure of with your assessor before the visit.

Your assessor is there to support you through your apprenticeship and they’ll be available by phone and email during your training. If you’re not sure about any aspect of your course, make sure you tell them as this is their job to help you.

Set aside time to complete assignments

During your apprenticeship, you’ll be expected to complete a new learning task every month. So, even though you may be working full time, you’ll be expected to take full responsibility for your learning and set aside time to study.

It’s a good idea to set aside at least one hour per day to dedicate towards your apprenticeship. That way, you can spread the studying out rather than trying to fit it all in the day before the assignment is due in. If you do this Monday-Friday, you’ll then have Saturday and Sunday to relax and enjoy!  

Ask if you’re not sure

As a new apprentice starting out, you won’t know how to do your role straightaway, and there may be times when you need to ask for help. Your colleagues will be a great source of support, so make sure you ask them about anything you’re not sure of.

The policies and procedures of the setting are a really useful source of information, too. Look around the walls of the setting and in the staff room, as you may find some really helpful information displayed which could help you in your course. You could also contact your assessor as they’re there to support you with anything you’re unsure of.

Thinking of starting an apprenticeship? Speak to our recruitment team today for help and advice about your future career.

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