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National Apprenticeship Week: celebrating our GC apprentices

  • Tuesday, February 6, 2024
  • Posted By The Growth Company

The Growth Company is an award-winning apprenticeship training provider, offering a huge range of apprenticeships for people throughout all stages of their working lives – from new starters to career changers, there is no age limit on the apprenticeships we offer.

Currently, we have 19 colleagues who are completing apprenticeship programmes here at the Growth Company to enhance their skills and professional development.

This National Apprenticeship Week, we’re putting the spotlight on some of these colleagues and highlighting their experiences working at GC and completing an apprenticeship.

Jodie Richardson, Service Manager, GC Employment, level 3 Leadership and Management Apprentice 

Jodie joined the Growth Company in 2021 as a Restart Advisor as she really enjoyed working with and helping people, just under a year later she was promoted to a lead role. 

Jodie’s manager worked with her to plan her development and help her to work towards becoming a Lead, and then towards a Service Manager role. Jodie also enrolled on a level 3 Apprenticeship in Leadership and Management, with the support of her manager which she has now almost finished. 

She has now been promoted to Service Manager within GC Employment – just 2.5 years after first joining GC as an Advisor, this has been made possible by taking part in the apprenticeship as it added value to the skills she was gaining and gave her the knowledge and confidence to pursue a role in management. 

Jodie said: “My manager was extremely supportive of my development and placed a lot of trust in me to give me the experience I needed to develop and move into other roles. 

"I was also recently diagnosed with autism and GC, and managers Mandy and Grace, have fully supported me in this area, enabling me to be diagnosed more quickly than I would ordinarily have been, and providing support following my diagnosis.

Jodie Richardson portrait

“My tutor was and is incredibly understanding about my neurodivergence both before and after my diagnosis. We have worked together regarding professional discussions, as I initially struggled with a lack of structure, and feeling uncomfortable speaking/being recorded. However, we were able to come up with a plan together that helped me display my knowledge on several topics all in one go, meaning less discussions were needed overall. My tutor has been flexible in their approach, and I am very appreciative of that.” 

She added: “I love working for GC, and working on contracts that really help people, and I plan to stay as long as they will have me!"

Samuel McGurk, Finance Assistant, level 2 Finance Assistant Apprentice

Samuel joined the Growth Company in 2021 working with the Made Smarter team and the Kickstart team, before joining our Finance Team in August 2022 as a Finance Assistant within the accounts payable team. After six months in his role, Samuel enrolled on the level 2 Finance Apprenticeship which covers elements of the level 2 AAT qualification.

Since enrolling on the course, he has been working across different departments to increase his knowledge of finance and all it encompasses, he has completed six months of work experience with the credit control team.

Samuel said: “When I first started in the Finance Team my manager mentioned that the AAT qualifications could be a good way to enhance my finance knowledge and professional development. It can be difficult to get a job in finance without these qualifications so I knew it would be a great way to enhance my career path.

“I’ve found balancing studying alongside my role quite easy. It’s only one session a week and all of the content I’m learning maps into my role. My manager and tutor are also supportive; we have a quarterly meeting to discuss concerns or areas of development and put plans in place where needed.”

He added: “The biggest advantage is getting paid whilst you study. I think there can still be a stigma around apprenticeships, and there especially was when I was younger, that you only get paid like £2.00 an hour but that’s definitely not the case. Not only am I getting paid to learn but I'm also gaining skills that will inevitably help me in my career in the long term.”