How did you get into your job?
I began searching online for an IT apprenticeship at the start of Year 13 while studying for A-levels in Business Studies, Chemistry, English Literature and ICT knowing that I didn’t want to go to university. I was offered four school leaver positions, including one which was a sponsored degree but turned it down for the M&G Investments* role I am in now. It was the hardest but best decision of my life. I am able to earn money, start my career and continue to learn. Many of my school friends are at university thinking that with very few lectures a week it is not worth the debt. But with an apprenticeship I can get much needed practical work experience but also learn and gain qualifications and professional recognition.
Why do you enjoy your job?
I am responsible for maintaining the technology utilised across my team and our main project is building and implementing a new dealing platform. As part of this project I will be working in India for two weeks in the summer - an opportunity I never imagined myself being lucky enough to be given this time last year! My daily tasks are extremely varied - for example setting someone up with access to applications, writing my own Excel VBA code for a report, taking meeting notes, putting a new code into the live dealing programme, or creating testing plans and testing functionality. Every day brings something new with exciting challenges. I speak to a wide variety of people across IT and throughout the company, including international teams and clients.
How would you sum up your Investment20/20 experience?
I thoroughly enjoy my job and the apprenticeship scheme and would highly recommend it to anyone. I have made amazing friends with the other apprentices and I couldn’t ask for a more caring and friendly team. Since joining I have become more confident, happy and skilled as my Level 4 apprenticeship is equivalent to a diploma in Higher Education. M&G provides an excellent support network and in the workplace you are not treated like an apprentice but like any employee. I think it is time to challenge the university route as there are many more opportunities out there. The investment management industry is very fast-paced and fascinating and with technology continuously advancing, being a young woman who codes in the industry could not be any more exciting!
*M&G Investments is now M&G plc.