Sean Kane, IT Support Analyst, is the first person to complete an apprenticeship with Energy Assets and has now begun his professional career in the IT sector.
In November 2018 Sean became an Apprentice IT Support Analyst in the Livingston, office of Energy Assets. He worked in his role, alongside completing coursework, to complete his Level 4 Apprenticeship.
In September 2019 Sean completed his apprenticeship and was brought on as a full time employee by Energy Assets. We’ve invited him to talk about his experience as an Energy Assets Apprentice and how it’s helped him begin his career in IT.
“I’ve been interested in IT and working within the IT sector since high school. It’s a fascinating industry that’s constantly changing and adapting to the world around it and, in some instances, changing it. I knew I wanted to work within the industry, but didn’t know where to start. I did some research and felt that an apprenticeship would be the right move for me.
I was offered an apprenticeship at Energy Assets and jumped at the chance. Not only could I work in a sector that I was interested in as part of my qualifications, but the benefits package was excellent. Even though I was to be an Apprentice, I was entitled to the same benefits package as full-time employees. So I accepted and began my journey as an Apprentice IT Support Analyst in November 2018
The apprenticeship involved the usual coursework that was to be expected in every apprenticeship course, and this was run externally, but alongside this I was also employed in a full-time capacity in my new role.
My focus as an Apprentice IT Support Analyst was on ‘first line’ support. This meant that if someone within the company was experiencing an IT issue, I was one of the first to receive the support request and I was responsible for triaging and either fixing the issue myself or delegating it to the relevant branch of the IT team to work on.
After a few months of this I took on a new task. As well as ‘first line’ support and triage, I became partly responsible for setting up the equipment requested for new employees within the company. Energy Assets has offices all across Great Britain and this involves a lot of preparation and organisation to configure the equipment to the correct specifications for both hardware and software and deliver them to the right places. This improves the ability for employees to carry out their jobs and ensures a smooth on-boarding process.
There was a lot more to my role, but these two aspects were among the biggest and took the majority of my time.
The support I received throughout my apprenticeship helped me to dedicate myself fully to my education and role. I’m trusted to know what is right for me and the company respected my needs. The apprenticeship had a flexible structure that allowed me to learn on the go, which was really helpful in the beginning. Towards the end there was a more formal and structured approach which had its own merits.
My external supervisor for my apprenticeship course would come in to the office to walk through the coursework aspect of the apprenticeship, but the support network in the office itself was incredible.
I was given as much time as I needed to complete my coursework. Whenever I needed help or assistance for my role it was patiently given and I never felt like a burden to anyone. I was constantly encouraged to grow my skillset and learn new things. As much as the IT department is a team, and teamwork is integral, I was encouraged to be independent when needed, which helped boost my confidence. Everyone on the team, and even those outside of my department, were positive and helpful throughout every stage of my learning.
That’s not to say that everything has been easy. I’ve had my fair share of challenges. One that sticks in my mind is when a home-based employee was having printer issues and the problem had to be fixed over the phone. It was a difficult task as I couldn’t physically see the printer, but through good communication I managed to solve the problem.
A highlight of my apprenticeship is the Outward Bound excursion that Energy Assets organised for all the Apprentices. This was something I’d never heard of in any other Apprentice programme offering. The outdoor activity took place over 5-days and with all of the other Energy Assets Apprentices. It was a fantastic opportunity to meet the other Apprentices. We worked on team building, communication and problem solving skills together. I’m really grateful that Energy Assets gave their Apprentices, and me, this experience – it shows the organisations commitment to the apprenticeship programme and the wellbeing of their apprentices.
Thanks to my Energy Assets apprenticeship, I now have a career pathway open to me within the field of IT. At the moment I’m still considering the longer term possibilities and where to specialise however what I do know there are opportunities available tome. For now I am very happy working in full time employment as an IT Support Analyst here at Energy Assets.
My apprenticeship has offered me an insight into an industry that I’m passionate about, and has given me the skills, knowledge and support to succeed within it. I’ve gained a career launching opportunity that seems unrivalled. It was both a challenging and rewarding experience that I would recommend to anyone considering embarking on an apprenticeship journey.”