A Q & A with Ben Clark - Apprentice Account Assistant National Apprenticeship Week

How did you find out about the apprenticeship opportunity?

I found the apprenticeship looking through Indeed and when I saw a chance to work for a nationwide company in Eddisons I had to take it.

I applied and was invited for an interview at Eddisons Lincoln office; they explained the apprenticeship procedure to me and all that was involved in undertaking the qualification. When I was offered the position as Apprentice Assistant Accountant, I was really happy.

Why did you want to do an apprenticeship?

I wanted to do an apprenticeship as I believe it is an incredible opportunity to gain experience in actually doing a job but also gaining a qualification that you will be able to carry with you for the rest of your working life.

I chose to do an apprenticeship over a degree as I believe it gives me the best opportunity to progress my career in a debt-free manner whilst also providing me with skills learnt from my colleagues who are experienced in the field in which I want to progress. Furthermore, it has allowed me to kick-start my career earlier, compared to other people on a similar career path who went to university and who would then need to search for a job after finishing their degree and would not have the same experience as me to fulfill their job role.

What support have you received during your apprenticeship?

Although I am still in the early stages of my apprenticeship and my career, I think I have received immense support from many of my colleagues at Eddisons Lincoln whether that be through helping me to understand my everyday tasks in the job role or by giving me their own knowledge of accounting to help with my apprenticeship.

What are the best parts of being an apprentice?

I think the best part about being an apprentice is the feeling of self-betterment in my role at Eddisons. This is because while learning the qualifications, I can then come into work and apply them to my everyday tasks and further improve my standard of work.

I study one day each week with live lessons and come to work for the other four days which provides a good balance. I can then ask my accounting colleagues for assistance too if I am struggling with a particular element of the course.

How will / How has the apprenticeship benefitted your career?

I am studying for an AAT Level 3 which will allow me to then further progress to an AAT Level 4 and eventually become a member of the AAT, which is the UKs leading professional membership body for accounting staff and would allow me to have an improved job role, understanding how to do increasingly difficult tasks in the world of accounts.

What would you say to someone considering an apprenticeship?

I would say do it. Like I said it is the perfect blend of gaining knowledge of doing the job and also learning the theory behind it and I don’t think there is a better way of learning a qualification than that.

You learn so many new skills and feel supported through your learning experience.