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Our Apprentices – Where Are They Now?

MIKEY MARR AND SOPHIE MCGRAW, THEIR JOURNEY.

 

Following up from Modern Apprenticeship week, we would like to share some of our apprentice’s stories and how far they have come during their time at Portal Technologies. We sat down with Mikey, our Technical Support Manager, and Sophie our Marketing Assistant to discuss their time here at Portal and what they have achieved.

Mikey started at Portal Technologies in June 2012, only 19 years of age, undergoing an apprenticeship in Information and Communication Technology Professionals. After successfully completing his apprenticeship, he was offered a permanent position at Portal. Mikey has grown with the business over the last 6 years and now manages our IT helpdesk. Mikey is a great ambassador of our apprenticeship scheme and shows how his hard work and determination has moved him into a management role.

 

Mikey;

  1. What made you choose to do an apprenticeship?

“When I left school, I truly didn’t know what I wanted to do, so my best option was further education. After completing my IT NC in college, I decided I wanted to start building some income, but I wasn’t too sure about diving in to a qualified role. I felt like I wanted to gain experience in a working environment, but still learn. The thought of ‘earn whilst you learn’ really appealed to me. So, I applied for a few apprenticeships, in all different fields and again, fell in to IT.”

 

  1. What did you learn during your apprenticeship and what have you learned during your time at Portal Technologies?

“I thoroughly enjoyed my apprenticeship. I learned a lot during it, way more than I learned in college. The thing I really liked about the apprenticeship was that I was learning and studying the theory of a processes, and immediately after I saw the practical side of it being performed – this is where I learned the most. Every day was different. I was able to go on site and meet new clients and got to experience different working environments. I really feel like I have gained more confidence at my time at Portal.”

 

  1. Where are you now?

“I have achieved all of my Microsoft MTA exams in operating systems, security, networking and servers. Another thing that I achieved was my driving test. I would’ve never learned to drive if it wasn’t for needing to because of my job. I attended an Office 365 course, and I am now known as the office 365 ‘guru’ in the office. I feel confident enough to speak with clients, providing them with advice on what packages are most suited to them. In December 2017 I was promoted to Technical Support Manager. I now manage all incoming support tickets, organising site visits and oversea the overall helpdesk, on top of managing my own tickets and going on site visits. My apprenticeship has helped me gain a great amount of knowledge about the IT Industry. Choosing to do an apprenticeship was the best possible way for me to learn. I am pleased I took this apprenticeship as I have never looked back.”

Sophie started at Portal Technologies in September 2015 undergoing an apprenticeship in Level 3 Business Administration. Sophie flourished in her apprenticeship and started to widen her knowledge in other areas of the company. When joining Portal Technologies Sophie was unsure of the direction she wanted to progress her career in wanted to get a good all round understanding of the various roles in business. The management team at Portal soon recognised Sophie’s creative skill and engaging personality which were ideally suited to a role in social media. As such, Sophie has continued her leanings after her apprenticeship and is forever expanding her skill set.

 

Sophie;

  1. What made you choose to do an apprenticeship?

 

“After I left school, I wasn’t too sure what path I wanted to go down. So, I thought the wise thing to do was to go in to further education. The thought of university wasn’t for me, so I decided to apply for an HNC in Social Sciences at college. After successfully completing my HNC, I decided I wanted to get a full-time job and gain some experience in an office environment. I was struggling to find employment that didn’t require years of experience – this is when I stumbled across apprenticeships. I really liked the thought of learning on the job.”

 

  1. What did you learn during your apprenticeship and what have you learned during your time at Portal Technologies?

 

“I enjoyed my apprenticeship. I really started to understand how a business is run and what is involved in an administrative role. But I must say, I learned a great deal from Portal alone. As Portal Technologies is a small business, I started to become involved in different areas and was given a lot of responsibility – which I loved! My role is varied every day which suits me, and is one reason why I took the job at Portal. One day I could be managing our accounts and creating quotes for clients, the next I could be using photoshop for Social Media!”

 

  1. Where are you now?

 

“During the last year, I have started to take on much more within the company. Whilst working alongside Elspeth, the Sales and Marketing Director, I became interested in Digital Marketing and Social Media. As well as my administrative duties, I now manage all of our social media channels and our client’s. This involves generating content and creating artwork for posts and blogs. I am currently undergoing a Diploma in Digital Marketing, which I am thoroughly enjoying as I am learning and expanding my knowledge. Last month I presented to an audience of 55 on ‘How to Measure Success on Social Media’ with Elspeth, which was a success and something that I am proud of! In nearly 3 years I feel like I have accomplished a lot at my time here at Portal Technologies. I am very appreciative of the opportunities my apprenticeship has given me.”

 

At Portal Technologies we stress the importance of every member of staff in our team and strongly emphasis that as the business grows our staff grows with it. Mikey and Sophie’s journey with Portal Technologies is a clear example of the progression you can see at Portal Technologies. We are always on the look out for new talent and people with a passion for customer service. If this is something you are interested in head over to our About Us page – https://www.portaltechnologies.uk/about-us/