My Experiences of the Apprenticeship Scheme

This is a blog post written by the Zoedale Marketing Apprentice:

Zoedale are great believers in young talent, and they are a huge fan of the apprenticeship scheme. They have employed two apprentices in the past year, firstly our warehouse assistant Brendan who started in March 2013 and secondly, myself, Max a Marketing Executive and I started in August 2013. Brendan had finished and passed his course by March of this year, whilst I am currently just over half way through my course. Before I started my apprenticeship I was studying at school doing A-Levels but I felt my results weren't a true reflection of my ability so I decided I had to take another route to where I wanted to get in life.

Zoedale’s marketing apprenticeship was advertised in the school and I jumped at the opportunity. I thought an apprenticeship would be ideal for me as it is a more vocational approach to learning and applying my knowledge rather than a pure academic qualification.

For my apprenticeship I am in work for 4 days a week and in college for 1, this allows me to apply what I learn in Bedford College on the job. l enjoy this type of learning as I get to use what I learn and apply it in my day to day job. I have learned about targeted email marketing on my day in college and how it can be used to gain customers and business. I’d then be able to apply my new found knowledge to the emailing marketing within Zoedale. I find by applying it whilst it is fresh in my mind makes it easier instead of referring to what I learnt previously and forgotten about. Doing is learning!

My apprenticeship consists of two parts the knowledge side of it and the application side. My day in college covers the knowledge side, by the end of the course I will have taken 4 exams which range from Digital Marketing, Social Media, Analytics, SEO and PPC. I then have my application side of things which consists of an NVQ where I have to evidence where I have applied certain marketing practices and have to answer questions on how I use the practices in Zoedale. I have an assessor called Bev and a workplace learning supervisor called Megan who both come and visit me and ensure I am on track and achieving my goals.

I have enjoyed the work / learning mix of the apprenticeship as I have found that it is a steady introduction to the world of work. There is a massive difference between work and school, and with the day release to college I find helps make it a steady transition. By working closely with my "Mentor" at Zoedale I feel I have learned a lot about how marketing works in the real world and I can relate the principles used to what I have learned at college. I'd recommend an apprenticeship to anyone!

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