I have spent the best part of 10 years as a stay at home military wife looking after a young family. I was fortunate enough to have this time to watch my children grow up. As they grew older and spent more time at school I found that I had a lot of spare time on my hands and I began looking for opportunities to work, particularly apprenticeships as skills I had gained from previous employment were no longer relevant having been out of employment for so long.
I stumbled across the Civil Service Fast Track Apprenticeship on the National Apprenticeship website having never heard of it before. I wasn’t sure if I was what the Civil Service was looking for but I applied anyway. I really wanted to have a career of my own and it seemed like such a fantastic opportunity which offered varied work, free qualifications, a great salary and most importantly for me having a family, flexible working.
Work-life balance is very important to me and Civil Service is excellent at striking the right balance. I am able to work the hours that best suit me. If I work more on some days I can work less on others allowing me to spend more time with my family. This only adds to the attraction of signing up for the scheme.
The application process was straightforward and if you are lucky enough to reach an assessment day you receive a pre-assessment briefing pack. This pack is excellent and it really prepares you for the assessment day. I also contacted Civil Service resourcing with any issues I had during the application process and they were most helpful.
I was selected for the Business scheme and I am based in Newcastle. I currently work for HMRC Transformation: Making Tax Digital for Individuals. My team is responsible for managing the Tax Credits and Child Benefit digital services. My work is quite varied and I have recently been involved in developing webinars for the Tax Credits Digital Service. Attending the Induction Event in London was a highlight as it was an exciting moment. It made me feel like I was part of something special. The beginning of an exciting journey, a long and rewarding career in the civil service.
I receive a lot of support from my line manager and from the Fast Track team. If ever I have any issues there is always someone there to help me out at the end of the apprenticeship I would love to try other departments within the Civil Service and hopefully my qualifications will allow me to gain promotion.