Meet the Apprentices - Meet Ali Calvert, Norwich City Council

7th February 2020

Each day during #NAW2020 we will be introducing you to inspirational apprentices and rising stars, working in Local Government in the East of England, who blaze their own trail.

I joined Norwich City Council in 2015 as an HR Assistant and following a secondment to an HR Officer role in 2017 the opportunity arose to gain my next qualification whilst undertaking an apprenticeship in HR Management provided by Blue Sky Assessing and Consultancy Limited. This was ideal for me as it gave me the chance to not only gain the qualification but also undertake a programme of learning on the job, which worked for my style of learning as well as my work-life balance.

Although I had a foundation in HR from an operational and transactional perspective in previous jobs, I wanted to gain more knowledge and experience in HR management, and the apprenticeship allowed me to devote time to learning more theory and build on my knowledge of employment law alongside gaining more practical skills at work.  The wide range of learning I have undertaken, from employee wellbeing initiatives to employment law updates have broadened my HR knowledge considerably.  By agreeing specific times during the week that I would devote to my studies, I was easily able to balance my workload and study requirements.

Completing my qualification is definitely my greatest achievement since becoming an apprentice, but in addition to this my confidence in the HR Officer role has increased immensely.  I have moved into supporting the Council with its’ ongoing transformation programme as well as TUPE projects, which have continued to challenge me and draw on the skills I have learned in the past 18 months. 

As an HR professional, I believe that apprenticeships are a fantastic way for people to gain hands on experience and learn the skills that employers want and need, adding value to businesses and opportunities for career progression for those looking to learn, as well as current employees such as myself. 

Apprenticeships give the opportunity to look beyond traditional routes into employment and allow you to explore a diverse range of career options in local government and beyond. Our #NAW2020 feature provides just a small taster of the true value that an apprenticeship can bring, to both individuals, local authorities and the wider community in the East of England.


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