Modern Apprenticeship in Management – Nathalay Smith, Everwarm
We were delighted to have had the opportunity to spend some time chatting with Nathalay Smith one of our candidates working towards her Modern Apprenticeship in Management SCQF Level 7 which is awarded jointly with the Chartered Institute of Management.
Nathalay initially started with Everwarm as an Administration Assistant on an agency basis. Nearly 4 years later (4 years in November to be precise), and at only 21 years old, 5 years after she left school, Nathalay is the Office Manager at one of the regional offices.
Nathalay credits this to the support of the company, including the HR team, and coaching and mentoring from her Operations Manager, as well as support from her own team. From the short amount of time that I spent with Nathalay, I can also add that Nathalay is very motivated to learn, to do the best job that she can, and she works hard, something that we have also seen through her work on this qualification.
As you would expect, Nathalay’s job can be challenging as the whole team works in a fast-paced environment. There may be a priority job that has to be completed while at the same time colleagues out working with customers may need information updated, materials ordered, appointments re-scheduled or problems solved. Clients are also in touch to find out about scheduled works, and the status of properties. Everything needs to run smoothly to make sure that work can be carried out as planned. Adjusting to the changing demands of COVID 19 has added to the challenge in recent months.
Working on the Modern Apprenticeship in Management has really helped Nathalay. It was her manager who suggested it as an option and Nathalay admits that she was a little bit nervous about whether a SVQ qualification would be for her, having not had the best experience in the past.
However, Nathalay told me “The difference is crazy. I have to research topics to investigate and explore things further, and I am learning new things from the course materials. It has really opened up my mind about how I behave in the workplace, how I approach things with my team and the whole way that I do my job. It has really got me thinking”.
Nathalay added that the course is at times making her think twice as well as encouraging her to think and reflect on what she says or does. She finds herself asking what the SVQ course material would have said or what she could do to make a situation work better.
Nathalay joked that her colleagues and managers will jokingly say: “Did you learn that from your SVQ?!”
Even though Nathalay is quite early on in the qualification, she has already been applying quite a bit in her role. For example, Nathalay told me that although she did always informally check in with her team, she now has more regular, planned meetings so that everyone can input their ideas, and this is proving really beneficial.
I asked Nathalay if she would recommend this qualification to other managers, and Nathalay was very clear that this would be the case. “This is helping me to be a good and better office manager, and it will also help me develop the skills that I need going forward within my career with Everwarm.”
Nathalay clearly loves her work, really appreciates the support and opportunity that she has received from everyone at the company and is taking every opportunity to make the most of this Modern Apprenticeship qualification.