5 months ago

Each year companies like EMR hire apprentices who are looking to pursue careers in a wide range of disciplines from HR to IT, Engineering to HGV Driving. So, what exactly is it like to complete an apprenticeship with a world-leading metal recycler like EMR? Nicole Thomas, Junior Content Producer at EMR shares her experiences.

Before joining EMR Nicole had worked in a bank and like many people had dealt with the impacts of working from home during the pandemic.

“I had been looking for an opportunity to develop my career when I saw an apprenticeship opportunity on a recruitment site. The role was advertised through my apprenticeship provider, ‘Apprentify’, who matched my interests with an apprenticeship at EMR and supported me through the whole interview process."

After a successful recruitment process, Nicole joined the Learning & Development team at EMR’s head office and was introduced to the metal recycling industry.

Nicole admits her surprise at the complexity of EMR’s operations and the advanced technologies used to ensure that sites divert as many of these valuable materials from landfill as possible.

“The industry was relatively unknown to me before I joined and in my first seven months with EMR I’ve been amazed by what I have seen. As soon as you set foot on one of our sites you are immediately in awe of the size of the machinery and the volumes of material that our teams work with on a daily basis.”

And, what was more surprising to Nicole was the amount of different functions that make up the business, many of which she has been given an insight into.

“Each person that I’ve reached out to for help has gone out of their way to support me and give me an insight into their area of the business.”

So, what is on the job learning like? Like any qualification, Nicole feels that it can be demanding but is thankful that EMR are flexible and give her the time she needs to complete her work.

“Apprenticeships are a great way to gain a qualification whilst getting invaluable on the job experience. I meet with my manager Laura each week to discuss my work load and make sure I have enough time to do what I need to. Laura is great, she finds out what I need experience in - whether it’s video design, photography or website building - and either lets me know who to ask for support, or finds projects that I can be part of to develop these skills.”

Many people may not consider an apprenticeship as a way to develop their skill set, find their passion and take the first steps into their future career, but Nicole offers advice for anyone looking for a new direction.

“Like many apprenticeships, mine gives me skills that I can transfer into a number of roles. If you take designing a website for example, you may need a web designer to build the page, a copywriter for the text and a photographer for any images. On my course, I am developing skills that I could use to start my career in any of those fields.”

What does the future hold for Nicole? Her answer is simple.

“The great thing about EMR is that they only offer apprenticeships when they will have a role available on completion. I can’t wait to finish my apprenticeship and see what the future holds for me at EMR!”

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