Hints on employer expectations for apprentices
When you first enter the workforce or a new industry, it might not be obvious how you’re being appraised. Knowing what your employer expects from you can help you get off to a great start in your apprentice role.
It sounds obvious, but your employer will want you to turn up on time and make sure you are early for appointments. By doing this, you will show you are really committed to the job and that you appreciate the opportunity. Conversely, by turning up late or not at all, you may give the impression you are not interested in the work.
Remember the way you are dressed and groomed says a lot about you – just think of what you thought about people the last time you took public transport. Perhaps it’s time to consider getting rid of that stubble or investing in some new work clothes. Investing time in your appearance could pay dividends in the long run.
Be polite, especially when dealing with customers. The old adage really does ring true; it doesn’t cost anything to be polite and may even help your career
Don’t be afraid to say what you think and to try and have some positive input on situations – after all, that’s part of your job. However, make sure you go about this in a constructive way and try not to break hint no. 3 about politeness.
Ability to work independently
Employers are often busy; running projects is a time-consuming and costly exercise. If you can demonstrate your ability to work independently you will be a great help to them, and will no doubt do your career some good.
Almost all apprenticeships will require you to work with other members of a team at some point, even if that just means being the one who makes the tea. Being prepared to help out when you can, as well as work well with others will be a real bonus – even if you don’t like your new colleagues.
Desire to learn
This is, after all, the whole point of the apprenticeship. Staying that extra half hour after work to learn new skills will not only benefit you in your future career – it will demonstrate that you are serious about your trade. Of course, dashing out as soon as the clock hits 5.30 might get you to the pub sooner but it will give your employer the impression that you aren’t that keen to get ahead.
Embarking on a new career puts you in new environments, exposes you to different personalities and may very well challenge your world view. At all times, your employer is going to be assessing your ability to accept new concepts, listen to differing opinions and analysing whether you will fit into their workplace culture. Remember, you are coming into a new role; if you have strong opinions about the way things should be done, it might be best to keep them to yourself.
Try and really engage with your work and set yourself small goals. While this may be difficult at first, it will really help you to make the most of the working day, and you’ll find that it goes quicker if you are really committed to it.
Ever heard the one about Murphy’s Law – if something can go wrong, it always will? Working on any job always throws up the unexpected event which can be difficult to deal with for your employer. Be prepared to help out with other tasks if you can – it could be useful to have those extra skills when you start looking for full time work at the end of your apprenticeship.
Most everything ties back to your enthusiasm. If you are committed to your work, take pride in everything you do, and try and learn something new every day you can’t go far wrong. Remember, a positive attitude leads to positive results!
Don’t forget to visit our Training and Development
page for more information about securing employment in the Resources industry.