Thomas Tuohy: On what it's like being an apprentice
March 16, 2016
In our third installment in a week-long series of stories in support of National Apprenticeship Week in England, we asked Thomas Tuohy, who joined BNY Mellon’s Manchester office in November 2014, to share what it is like to work as an apprentice in financial services.
After finishing my A levels at a local college in Greater Manchester, I decided going to university wasn’t a path I wanted to take. I looked into apprenticeships as the opportunity to gain work experience and earn qualifications all at the same time, as well as get paid, was appealing.
The interview process was quite daunting but as an apprentice you are not required to know anything about the financial industry. You can relate questions back to your previous experiences and show how your qualities would be beneficial to the company and role.
I was nervous on the first day but everyone in the office was really welcoming. There were a lot of young people, and everyone was easy to talk to. My first role at BNY Mellon has been in the Income and Tax Euroclear team and I quickly made new friends.
Being out in the real world is completely different to being in education, but you soon adjust to having more responsibility and greater freedom. When I first started at BNY Mellon I was paired up with a buddy to help with all my learning needs and to help with the transition into working life. Now I am a buddy to new starters who join the company.
The workload for the apprenticeship is manageable and easy to fit around other tasks and responsibilities, including putting together an experience log. BNY Mellon provides many resources to help the learning aspect and there is continual support throughout the programme. My manager has been really flexible with letting me take time out to complete my portfolio, plus there are quiet spaces and ‘learning zones’ in the office where you can go to work.
It isn’t all work too. Our office is right in the middle of Manchester, so there are opportunities for lots of socialising with your department and other teams after work. In my department, we organise football matches every other month and we’ve also had table tennis tournaments and bowling nights, so there are plenty of ways to get involved.
Being an apprentice doesn’t mean you get treated differently. I enjoy having responsibility and the same opportunities to progress as any other staff member. After just 10 months at BNY Mellon I was promoted to a senior administration role and I’m currently working towards level 3 on my apprenticeship. I hope to move into a managerial role within the next five years.
I would highly recommend an apprenticeship at BNY Mellon. It’s rewarding and you get to work in a great environment. I enjoy coming into work each day, and I get to learn from some brilliant people. I couldn’t encourage people enough to think about an apprenticeship, it has opened doors for me, and it could do the same for you.
If you are interested in joining BNY Mellon’s Manchester office as an apprentice, please visit www.bnymellon.com/careers and search ‘apprenticeship.’ Alternatively contact The Skills Company on +44 161 233 2645 or click here.
To join the National Apprenticeship Week conversation, follow the hashtag #NAW2016 on Twitter or follow @Apprenticeship