Future leaders in clean energy - National Apprenticeship Week 2020

  • Posted: 07 Feb 2020

This week we’re celebrating National Apprenticeship Week 2020, looking beyond the outdated stereotypes that surround apprenticeships, and celebrating the value they bring.

Meet our newest recruit, Jack, who is 17 and from South Bristol. He joined the Thrive team in November as Finance and Administration Apprentice and is currently working towards his Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) apprenticeship level 3. Despite his short time here, Jack has already become an essential member of the team, taking part in many different areas of the business.

Why did you choose an AAT apprenticeship instead of going to university?

I’ve always been more of a hands-on learner and when I learnt about apprenticeships as an option after school, I knew that that was the right path for me.

Why did you choose Thrive Renewables?

I had been looking for an apprenticeship opportunity for a while whilst studying at college. Other interviews I had often felt like they didn’t really value you as an employee and just saw you as the coffee fetching apprentice. When I interviewed for Thrive it really felt like they were looking for a member of the team, someone to contribute and I really liked that. Through the interview I felt like I would be valued, not just an apprentice, and treated equally within the organisation.

Have you always been interested in the environment and renewable energy?

One of my favourite things growing up was David Attenborough’s nature documentaries, so I’ve always been engaged with the natural world and climate change. But since joining Thrive I have learnt so much about renewable energy.

What’s your favourite part about working for Thrive?

I really enjoy working with the whole team. In Finance, you have the opportunity to get to know everyone and their bit of the business. Everyone is very friendly, we have a nice chat in the office and it’s never awkward. I also loved the Christmas party. It was great to get to know the team outside of the office and have fun.

What do you think is the best thing about hiring an apprentice?

I think it’s great giving someone who might not have the opportunity to work in a company like this that chance. It’s so hard to find work at the moment when you don’t have specific experience, but here I have the support of the team to gain that experience and really learn.

What are your ambitions following your completion of the apprenticeship?

I’m keen to stick in accountancy and continue to work my way up. After I complete level 3, there is the opportunity to proceed to obtain higher certification, either the ACCA or CIMA, which would help set me up to progress into more managerial positions in the future.

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Jack Searle - Finance and Administration Apprentice
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Katrina Cross - Finance Director
Why did you choose to hire an apprentice?

We needed a new person at an entry level who could grow with the company.  It was important to us to give an opportunity to someone who wouldn’t maybe get that chance with their academic record alone, but would fit into our environment and be very committed to continued learning.

What has been the best part about having an apprentice so far?

I think having Jack has just made us all more aware of what we do, how we communicate and the interactions within the team.  Thinking about how you teach someone from scratch just brings a new challenge to all of us and that has been good for us as individuals and the company.

Would you recommend this to other employers? Why?

I would definitely recommend this to other employers to freshen up thinking and approach and keep everyone current.  However, you need to ensure that staff are bought along with the process and have the dedicated time to make this work for the individual and the company.