A day in the life of an apprentice – Sheena Begum, Rayden Solicitors

Not sure what to do after my GCSEs

During my GCSEs it seemed everyone had decided exactly what they wanted to do once they left school. It was the usual “I’m going to do A-Levels/College then onto University”. I knew university wasn’t for me so I decided to complete my further education at college and then get a job.

Unhappy being stuck in shift work

I ended up being clueless and unhappy with what I was doing in my life– which was mundane shift work. It felt like I wasn’t going anywhere. Having an insightful conversation with my older sister prompted me to apply for an apprenticeship.

So I found myself one evening logging onto the apprenticeship website and creating a profile for myself. I applied for various positions, which I felt I had the necessary skills for, but no experience of. I was in total shock when I was offered interviews. One of them was with my current employer.

A varied role

One of my main roles in my job is to be a friendly and professional Ambassador for my firm as I am stationed at the reception area. I ensure all clients and visitors are greeted. I perform general reception/administration work, help with the marketing and will occasionally support the fee earners when required. The firm holds annual marketing events, which I help organise and ensure the smooth running of.

On the administration side, I collect the post/DX each day and deliver this to the fee earners. This is vital as it tells them how to begin their day. I ensure client payment receipts are sent on time, client satisfaction emails go out and all enquires to the firm are responded to.

My apprenticeship challenges

I expected the apprenticeship to be challenging and tough which within the couple of months turn out to be right! I knew that it wasn’t going to be a walk in the park. Over the course of my apprenticeship I have been able to find ways of managing myself better to perform my job as well as I can. I remember beginning my apprenticeship and everyone in the office using legal jargon, I had no clue what they were talking about. It’s great as I’ve learnt a lot about things I wouldn’t necessarily know if I didn’t work in this particular area.

I’m acquiring great skills

I am learning how to conduct myself professionally in a legal environment, and the general basic skills that are needed to work in an office. These can be converted and used elsewhere. There have been a lot of things I have learnt on my journey which I would not have known if I didn’t apply to be an apprentice!

One of the best decisions I ever made

I would 100% recommend them! If you’re someone who was like me; had absolutely no idea what to do after school and no desire to go to university, but wanted to pick up basic working skills and a good qualification, then applying for an apprenticeship is the route to go.

It’s one of the best decisions I’ve made and I know that once I’ve completed this it will open a wide range of doors for me. So if you’re motivated, willing to learn new things and want to develop yourself, then it’s definitely worth applying, after all you’ve got nothing to lose!

An apprenticeship provides opportunities

Once I have successfully completed my apprenticeship, I am eager to continue my employment. Doing an apprenticeship has inspired me to work harder and as I’ve enjoy performing this particular role. I wouldn’t mind developing my knowledge and skills one day to become a qualified legal secretary or Chartered Legal Executive.

This article was published as part of National Apprenticeship Week 2017