Finding the perfect apprenticeship
Apprentice, Ricardo is part of BMet’s apprenticeship recruitment team. His main role is to manage incoming apprenticeship vacancies, making sure they are advertised on the National Apprenticeships website as well as uploaded to BMet’s website.
Hundreds of CVs come through to the apprenticeship recruitment team every month. How do you stand out? Here’s Ricardo’s job search advice.
Find your strengths
When finding the perfect apprenticeship, it’s important to know your skills, qualities and capabilities. Start by searching for apprenticeships that you feel are a good fit for you and look for a company you can see yourself progressing and growing with in the future. That way, not only are you the right person for the job, the job is also right for you.
You might tell people you’re interested in pharmacy or customer service or motor vehicle, but how interested are you?
You need to prove it.
Find out all you can about different apprenticeships and then decide which one you really want to do. Go online, get advice from a careers or an apprenticeships advisor. Try and speak to someone that’s already doing the job if you can. Otherwise, you’ll be in for some surprises when you get to a job interview or even head into work on your first day.
Sort out your CV – and then sort it out again
If you’ve put a CV together, have you kept it up to date? Always make an effort to add details of any new work or personal experiences you’ve been through that could make you more employable.
Don’t forget to tailor your CV to every job you apply for. If the job involves working evening and weekends, being able to use excel or being able to drive then make sure you mention that you can do these things (or are hoping to learn them).
The right opportunity
I’d always like the idea of having a business-related career, even though I’d studied hospitality in sixth form.
Signing up to BMet’s apprenticeship talent bank gave me the chance to think about the exact type of job I wanted to do and how I might progress.
I took up temporary hospitality work while I was looking out for new vacancies the college advertised. I took my time, choosing what to apply for. I didn’t want to jump into the first role that came along in case it didn’t work out. I thought the role in BMet’s apprenticeship team would be ideal so when I was offered it, I felt great.
I definitely didn’t sit around waiting for the right job to come along. I knew I had to put the effort in and so I did this through my CV.
Going to CV writing sessions made me realise that it’s not a one-off document. You should always tailor your CV to the specific job being advertised. Also try and keep it brief and eye-catching if you can.
My work experience was mainly in hospitality so my first CV talked about my front of house skills; taking orders, preparing and serving food. I learned that if I wanted to work in business then I needed to change the way I talked about my skills and demonstrate that I knew about good customer service, team-working and communication.
A variety of vacancies
New vacancies come into the college all the time. I make sure the candidates can find them online easily and have as much information as possible about the roles.
The great thing about apprenticeships right now is that there’s something for everyone, whether it’s working in rail, motor vehicle, business administration or food and drink.
Interviewing to impress
I can’t stress enough how important it is to go to a job interview with at least some knowledge of the company you’re potentially going to work for. At the very least, make sure you know what the job role is and where you will be based.
Your potential employer has to believe you want this, so the more interested you are, the better the outcome for you.
With experience in business administration and a qualification to back this up, there are many more opportunities for me to progress or move into a different business environment. It’s good to know I have choices and that I have increased my opportunity for career progression.