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Words of wisdom from FCDO Services’ apprentices

Thinking about applying for an apprenticeship or know someone who might be perfect? You’ve come to the right place. With opportunities spanning Technical Engineering to Finance, there’s an apprenticeship for almost everyone at FCDO Services.

With on-the-job training, first-class mentorship and real salaries, every apprentice gains a wealth of experience as they earn while they learn. What’s more, our apprentices will often work alongside government-level customers, and some on secure projects right around the world. So, they don’t only launch a career they can be proud of, they make a real impact on the way.

Want to know more? We spoke to a handful of former apprentices to get their tips and advice for making the most of an apprenticeship. Here’s what they had to say.

“Be eager to learn – show you’re interested and ask lots of questions.” Former apprentice

As an FCDO Services apprentice, you won’t only have your line manager to lean on. You’ll be surrounded by a team who’re ready and waiting to lend a helping hand. From your immediate colleagues to your manager – not to mention all your fellow apprentices – you’ll be surrounded by an army of people to guide you through the programme. We want you to make the most out of your apprenticeship, so we encourage you to ask questions. And, as one of our former Technical Engineering apprentices says, “people are always willing to answer questions – you just have to ask.”

Apprentices that are eager to learn will get the most out of the programme. Show us that you’re interested in learning something new every day and we’ll boost your learning potential. So, as another of our former apprentices says, first and foremost, “don’t be afraid to ask questions.”

“Learn as much as possible from as many different people you can.” – Former apprentice

There are so many people for apprentices to learn from at FCDO Services. We’re collaborative, sharing our knowledge to protect the UK’s assets at home and overseas. As an apprentice, your development will be put front and centre, and there will be lots of colleagues for you to learn from and reach out to for support. And you might even get to learn from other departments throughout our organisation too.

While learning from all sorts of people with a wealth of experience, you’ll also start developing professional connections. A key piece of advice from a former apprentice here is to “get to know and learn from as many people as you can.” It’s beneficial to learn from a variety of colleagues while on your apprenticeship, as you’ll be able to tap into a pool of expertise to achieve the best outcome for every customer. Make the most of your apprenticeship by stepping outside your comfort zone and making as many new connections as you can.

“Don’t be afraid to step outside your comfort zone.” – Former apprentice

We don’t expect apprentices to come in and know everything – that’s the whole point of our apprenticeship: to guide your learning and develop skills for the future. Not knowing something is just part of life as an apprentice – and that’s OK. When we asked a former Warehouse Operative apprentice for their advice, they said “be eager, be enthusiastic and just try your best – everyone is so friendly and keen to help you.”

Enjoy every moment of the programme and embrace every challenge that comes your way. Each new experience will benefit your journey – whether that be a new skill or a lesson to take forward. Our team will be on hand to support you at every step, and they won’t give you more than they think you can handle.

“Take every opportunity you can. There are so many internal courses you can enrol on, so try to utilise these to gain experience and develop your broader skills.” – Former apprentice

We’ll encourage you to grab every opportunity with both hands – and we’ll give you the personalised training and support to make the most of each new experience. That’s why our apprentices next piece of advice is to “say ‘yes’ to everything. Don’t miss out on an opportunity because you’re ‘not sure’.”

With government-level customers spanning the globe, you can rest assured that each opportunity will be varied and exciting, no matter which apprenticeship you’re on. And you won’t only be offered skills-based courses; every apprentice studies for debt-free paid qualifications, from foundation certifications to degrees and professional qualifications. So, whatever the length of your apprenticeship, you’ll come away with accredited qualifications that will help you take your career higher.

Applications for our 2022 programmes are now closed but you can find out more on our dedicated apprentice page here.