Meet The Apprentice:
We caught up with accounts apprentice, Thomas, to find out more about what he gets up to as a part of his apprenticeship
I have now been with Cue for just over 2 years, after starting in January 2018 when I was just 17!
What does your role entail, in a nutshell?
As Accounts Assistant Apprentice, I am required to work four days a week in the office and one day a week at college for my qualification. At work, my main roles entail data entry of purchase/ sales invoices and all company expenses onto our accounting software Sage. I also deal with any queries with customers/suppliers that arise.
As we come to the end of each month, I begin working through our month-end checklist – creating the sales day book, project reports, posting journals for the month and controlling additions/depreciation/disposals of fixed assets and doing reconciliations to ensure the accounts are correct.
When we are happy with the accounts, I do a range of management accounting reports, such as job margin and operational cost analysis, to supply information throughout the company. In addition to this, I also have regular administrative tasks such as filing, archiving, replying to emails and answering phone calls.
What made you choose the apprenticeship route?
I chose the apprenticeship route as after starting my A-Levels, and not enjoying the environment and subjects I was studying, I considered putting my skills into practice with on the job learning – while still working towards a qualification and career. Getting paid in the process is a huge bonus!
What are you hoping to achieve through your apprenticeship?
In terms of my education, I have now completed both Levels 2 and 3 of my AAT qualifications and I’m currently working towards my Level 4 where, when complete, I will be fully AAT qualified. This is a gateway to further my studies and career into working towards a professional qualification – I plan to study CIMA when I finish my AAT.
In relation to my work life, during my time at Cue, I have learnt and developed many skills such as excel, organisation, speed and accuracy, communication, ability to follow processes and procedures and integrate as a valued member of the team.
Not only has this developed me as an employee, but it has matured me as a person in the world outside of the office.
How is Cue helping to support that goal?
So far, Cue has been brilliant at supporting my goals. Management have provided internal and external training, funded my AAT studies, and given me support when I need work evidence or witness testimonies for my college portfolio. They’ve also given me regular reviews and appraisals to guide me in the right direction as an employee to grow into my role.
What do you hope to do with the experience once your apprenticeship is over?
Cue is a great company to work for – as I’m working in a small finance department, it has allowed me to gain added experience from a wider range of responsibilities. I never feel restricted to just working in one area, as I get to do a little bit of everything. I would definitely like to stay with Cue and progress as an employee until the time is right to put my knowledge into practice elsewhere.
What qualification are you working towards?
After successfully completing my Level 2 and Level 3 AAT, I am now working towards my Level 4, which is the final stage of AAT.
What do you enjoy most about your apprenticeship?
The thing I enjoy the most about my apprenticeship is that I am trusted to follow my initiative and knowledge of the role to direct myself through my day to day duties. This is something I feel like I’ve really had to work on as I’ve grown in independence – and it is something I must keep on top of to continue to help myself progress.
With this comes trust from my manager, to give me the freedom to supply financial information throughout the company and for important meetings. In addition to this, we have recently taken on a work experience member of staff, who comes in one day a week. She is also studying an earlier level of AAT, and it is part of my role to assist her, manage her, and pass on my knowledge so that she can assist with the workload of the department.
What’s been the biggest challenge/lesson so far?
So far, the biggest challenge has been a restructure of the department, which resulted in me gaining more responsibilities. This meant I had to step up and work harder, manage my time better, and have training on more challenging tasks. This was enjoyable and feel it has helped me to progress at a much quicker rate. It has also made me feel like a valued member of the team as I’ve really been trusted with some key responsibilities.
What are your hobbies outside of your apprenticeship?
Outside of my apprenticeship, my main hobby is Drum and Bass music. Originally, I just used to listen to it casually, but that love grew into DJing, and in the last 6 months I have launched my own Drum and Bass event brand, which had a sold-out launch party at the end of 2019. In 2020, my goal is to continue learning to produce my own music and put on a few more nights of my own!