A 22-year-old from Cardiff is reaping the benefits of undertaking an apprenticeship after securing a promotion at Asda’s largest store in Wales.
Oliver Lock joined the Cardiff Coryton Supercentre in 2012 and was encouraged to apply for an apprenticeship by a member of his team.
He said: “I first heard about Asda’s apprenticeship scheme through one of my colleagues in the administration department; she approached me about applying for the apprenticeship because she thought I had the right skills, but I wasn’t sure it was right for me.
“But after thinking about it some more, and speaking to colleagues, I decided to give it a go and I’m so happy I did as I loved every minute.”
Oliver has since been promoted to section leader at Asda after completing level 2 and 3 apprenticeships in Retail Management, as well as the supermarket giant’s personal development programme, ‘Step On.’
He added: “I’ve learned so much from my apprenticeship – I have had exposure to so many areas of the business, I have been required to work out of my comfort zone and encouraged to go further than I would have previously thought possible.
“It has really increased my confidence and desire to progress my career with Asda, and to receive my promotion to Section Leader is just the icing on the cake.”
Kate Fisher, Senior Director, People, Talent, Leadership and Capability at Asda, said: “At Asda, our colleagues are the beating heart of the business and developing our people is a top priority. We are extremely proud of our Apprenticeship Programme which offers a vocational alternative to college or university, with many of our former apprentices going on to become part of our Senior Management team, having worked their way up.
“The Apprenticeship Programme we run here is organised around the individual and their role, and our aim is to provide colleagues with wrap-around support, a structured career path and a nationally recognised qualification. We also provide them with new skills to enable them to progress their careers and provide the business with its future leaders.
“We have found that this support generates greater colleague satisfaction, which results in better customer service and lower staff turnover in what is a fast moving and changing industry. Our apprentices feel valued, challenged and stretched, developed and above all respected.”
Minister for Skills and Science, Julie James, said: “In Wales, the number of employers offering apprenticeships is on the rise and I’m encouraged to see organisations like Asda committing to up-skilling their workforce.
“Apprenticeships represent one of the most practical and effective ways that businesses can access quality training and raise their skills levels. Apprenticeships enable employees to develop higher level technical and professional skills and develop the job specific skills employers need to keep up with industry changes and demand.”
The Apprenticeship Programme is funded by the Welsh Government with the support of the European Social Fund.
For more information about recruiting an apprentice, please visit Skills Gateway for Business or call 03000 6 03000. . Also find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/apprenticeshipscymru and on Twitter @apprenticewales