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Our Apprentice: 12 Months On...


It’s been a whole 12 months since we visited the Juice Academy to recruit Platform81’s first ever apprentice and we’ve come a long way since then.

Take a look what Jenny our Digital Marketing Apprentice had to say about her first year at Platform81 and how her apprenticeship has been coming along with only 6 months to go until her graduation!

Did you have a clear vision of what you wanted to be doing at Platform81?

I don’t think you really can have a definitive vision when you’re at the start of your career. I never wanted to restrict myself from learning as much about the industry as possible so I was open any to getting to grips with any task I was set. I’ve certainly done more than I could have imagined whilst working at Platform81.

One year on, how have things changed?

I’ve definitely matured in this past year and adapted to the transition of working full time. It’s quite a change going straight into work from college, but I think I’ve adapted easily.

This time a year ago I was coming up with ideas for social content, learning how to write effective blogs and getting to grips with working on a variety of different accounts, now I’m implementing ideas  through paid social advertising, as well as working on everything from email marketing, to implementing keywords and adding products to e-commerce sites. I’ve attended social media conferences, smartphone video training courses and regularly attend client meetings.

Do you still feel like an apprenticeship was the right decision?

100%. I have nothing against the university route, but for me an apprenticeship was perfect. I wanted to go straight into work, develop my skills and still gain a recognised qualification.

A lot of people believe that by not going to university it means that you ‘miss out on your teenage years’ but let me tell you… one quarterly night out with Platform81 is probably the equivalent to freshers week haha! 

What was the deciding factor that you wanted to do this as your career?

I felt this unwanted pressure to go to university but as soon as I researched The Juice Academy and Digital Marketing Apprenticeship I knew it was for me. A week into working at Platform81 I knew I’d made the right decision… when you know you know! 

What’s been the highlight of the last year?

Hand on heart, I’ve enjoyed every moment of this past year working at Platform81. From the actual work itself, to the people that I get to work with and the quarterly nights outs; it’s been the craziest, yet best year of my life.

I’ve got to say though, being surprised with the news I’d been shortlisted for Apprentice of the Year at The MPA Awards naturally has the edge as my top highlight, then on top of that to know work I’ve contributed to for a client of ours has also been shortlisted for the ‘Big Bang’ category was amazing. It’s a great feeling seeing the work you’ve done getting noticed. I knew I wanted to be producing content for social media and seeing the results that came from it, but I also wanted to try new things and I’ve certainly done that with this apprenticeship.

What’s been your biggest learning?

Thanks to the huge range of different topics and aspects of digital marketing that I study at The Juice Academy as well as the varied work I do here at Platform81, I’ve definitely learnt more about this industry than I would have expected to in one year. I can now easily report on the performance of digital activity, engagement figures, conversions, website analytics and everything in between and then discuss this in depth with clients which is something I definitely wouldn’t have known how to do a year ago.

What advice would you give a new apprentice? 

My biggest advice would just be to have confidence. It sounds so cliché and every apprentice under the sun has been told it when applying for a job, but it really is true. If you’re confident in yourself and your work, it will only reassure an employer that they’re doing the right thing in taking you on as an apprentice. If you’re looking for my full advice, then check out one of my previous blogs ‘5 Top Tips to Stand Out as an Apprentice’ here 

What do you think are the 3 most important things you need to succeed in this industry?

Confidence and self-belief obviously, but also dedication.

What are you looking forward to most in the next 12 months?

In six months’, time my apprenticeship will be complete and (hoping all goes well), I’ll be ready to move onto the next stage of my career and hopefully becoming a fully fledged member of the Platform81 team. I’ve had such a fantastic start to my career since being here and can’t wait to see what else comes. Fingers crossed for the MPA’s in October!