On the Fast Track apprenticeship no two days are the same and every day brings fresh challenges. This is a real alternative to a university education and I'm constantly learning new things.
I resigned from a job in the City to join the programme because I knew it was one of the best on the market. The programme gives me the opportunity to develop myself and set a good foundation for a fruitful career. The Civil Service is a vibrant and dynamic place to work and very few employers can match what it has to offer – both in terms of breadth and depth.
It can be a challenge to manage the demands of a full-time job and studying at the same time. The most important thing is to manage your time well, give it your best shot and not be afraid to ask for help when you need it.
Having completed the 2 year programme, I've now secured a new role on promotion working as a business analyst. As part of my role I'm responsible for creating two new directorates within our department which will help us build on our customer centric business strategy – where the citizen is placed the heart of all we do. I also develop management information systems to monitor performance against monthly targets. As we're changing the way we work and getting smaller I've been involved in how best to shape the makeup of our workforce over the next parliament and beyond.
My proudest achievement while I've been on the scheme has been working on the Chancellor’s Budget proposals/bids in 2014 and 2015.
The Budget is an annual fiscal event delivered to the House of Commons by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. It lays out the government's plans for taxation, spending, cuts and investments over the next 12 months. My role was to analyse where we needed more investment in our department in order to maximise the amount of tax revenue we can bring in (eg recruiting 200 trainees to undertake fraud investigations work).
There’s never been a better time to join the Civil Service as it’s going through some of the most radical reforms to date and you can be part of that process. It's an opportunity to be of service and play your part in public life. For people who are eager to learn and serious about building a career in the public sector there are always opportunities to shine and develop yourself.
You get the best of both worlds as you study for qualifications while still doing a day job. Apprentices are very much a talent pipeline for government departments, which means the investment made in you is a serious commitment to you from your department. Each generation of ministers, leaders and employees will make their own valuable contribution to the Civil Service before handing over the stewardship of our critical national duty to the next generation – if you want to play your part in that then I would highly recommend joining.