Exeter apprentice starts new learning journey with Amazon

News Desk
Authored by News Desk
Posted Tuesday, September 21, 2021 - 10:33pm

An apprentice who works at Amazon’s delivery station in Exeter is taking the first step on the path to higher education and new experiences after joining the Amazon Apprenticeship programme.

Amazon is creating 1,000 full-time apprenticeships in the UK this year. The apprenticeships cover 25 different programmes ranging from IT, safety technician and HR through to software engineering and creative digital design. Roles include 100 degree-level apprenticeships and more than 500 apprenticeships for Amazon employees, providing an opportunity to retrain and gain new skills

After completing the fully funded Improvement Specialist apprenticeship, Alice Bradley (27) will use her new skills and knowledge in a project management role at Amazon’s delivery station in Exeter, helping her continue her career progression within the company.

Speaking on the Amazon Apprenticeship programme, Alice said: “I studied history and archaeology at the University of Southampton before joining a graduate scheme at a logistics company, where I stayed for four years. I then moved to Amazon in 2020, at the height of the pandemic.

“Taking on a new job during COVID-19 definitely came with challenges. However, I enjoy the challenges that my role at Amazon brings me, as it means I’m always learning. This is one of the reasons I wanted to do the Amazon Apprenticeship, alongside the support offered as part of the programme. It’s an amazing programme that gives you the time to study while you’re working, while also paying all of the fees for your course.”

Nicola Drury, UK Apprenticeship Manager at Amazon added: “The Amazon Apprenticeship programme is a great way to develop new skills and embrace new opportunities. We’re passionate about helping our people develop through a wide range of training programmes and it’s fantastic that hundreds of our 1,000 apprenticeships have been taken by existing Amazon employees and that we are also welcoming new people to the company. We’re proud that Alice has joined the programme and everyone at Amazon in Exeter is looking forward to supporting her career progression.”  

The 1,000 new apprentices will join current apprentices already working at Amazon. The current Amazon apprenticeship schemes have attracted recruits from a range of different backgrounds including a former barista, footballer and photographer, to former military veterans and nurses. Throughout the last year, people have also joined Amazon from construction, customer services, health care, hospitality and sales industries.

The apprenticeship schemes are designed to suit candidates with a range of experience, from those with life skills to school leavers who are 18+ with GCSEs or A-levels. The roles pay a minimum of £10.00 or £11.10 per hour depending on location, up to £32,000 a year for degree-level apprenticeships.

Apprentice programmes last between 14 months and four years and a typical apprenticeship combines theoretical learning with hands-on training, enabling participants to obtain qualifications and degrees and earn money in the process.

Once qualified, apprentices will have the potential to work across Amazon’s UK sites including fulfilment centres, delivery stations, sortation centres and the company’s UK head offices in London and Manchester and the three development centres in Edinburgh, Cambridge and London.

Amazon provides competitive pay, excellent benefits and a modern, safe and engaging work environment for its employees. The comprehensive benefits package includes private medical insurance, life assurance, income protection, and an employee discount – which combined are worth more than £700 annually – as well as a company pension plan. 

Earlier this year, Amazon announced plans to create more than 10,000 new permanent jobs in 2021, taking its total UK workforce to more than 55,000 people by the end of the year. It will also invest £10 million over three years to train up to 5,000 employees in new skills and support the Government’s investment programme. This training will be offered through Amazon’s Career Choice programme, where the company pays course fees for its employees who have expressed an interest in pursuing a career outside of Amazon – something that will boost the skills and employability of British workers.

Amazon employees also have great opportunities to progress their careers at the company, whether that be through improving existing skills or promotion into a managerial role. For those who see their future outside of Amazon, the Career Choice programme provides funding for adult education, offering to pre-pay 95% of tuition and associated fees for nationally recognised courses, up to £8,000 over four years. Courses available range from accountancy to HGV drivers and software developers, and are designed to help employees pursue careers outside of Amazon if they choose to do that.

Anyone interested in finding out more information about the Amazon apprenticeship programme can visit www.amazonapprenticeships.co.uk

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