Jessica Parlour has won the CILEx Apprentice of the Year award for 2016. The award, which is sponsored by CILEx Law School, and the prize of £500 was awarded to Jessica at the CILEx Graduation Ceremony on Saturday 1st October 2016 at Jurys Inn, Milton Keynes.
Jessica is one of six apprentices employed by HMRC Solicitors Office & Legal Services (SOLS) in London. A further ten legal apprentices are employed by HMRC throughout offices in Manchester, Nottingham, Leeds, Bristol, Cardiff and Birmingham. All are being trained by CILEx Law School.
In making the nomination, Jessica’s supervisor said: “Jessica is performing both as an apprentice and employee of HMRC Solicitor’s Office to a very high standard. Jessica has passed all of her CILEx exams that she has taken so far first time and has already achieved two distinctions and a merit, despite personal adversity which includes a very long daily commute into London from Southampton.
In her first 6 months, Jessica was with the Litigation Support team. During her time in the team, she established herself well even to the point of the manager saying she “could be the deputy on the team”. Jessica also took the initiative to put forward her own ideas on how the post process could be improved by being digitalised, which is something that we are trying to do with all of our processes in HMRC to save cost and time. She created and implemented the process herself.
In Companies Support, she single-handedly collected the second highest amount of dismissal costs ever collected in the team and she has taken the lead in designing an automated, streamlined Dismissal Costs process which has been previously under resourced. Jessica is now mentoring a member of staff in the new process, even though she will soon be moving on to another team as part of the apprenticeship programme. Jessica is of great value to the company as she is not easily daunted by a challenge and has helped develop the capability of those around her.”
Jessica has a great belief in the value of apprenticeships which is shown by her volunteering with Inspire the Future where she has attended events to promote apprenticeships to school leavers and teachers, including organising a visit for school leavers to the office to promote legal apprenticeships.
On receiving the award, Jessica said: “It is a privilege to receive this award from CILEx and CILEx Law School. I am very proud to be a CILEx Legal Apprentice and show that you don’t need to go down the traditional route to have a successful career in the legal sector.”