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Climbing the ladder with an apprenticeship

We marked National Apprenticeship Week by showcasing the stories of two employees at either ends of the career spectrum.

Organised by the National Apprenticeship Service, the awareness week, which celebrated its tenth anniversary with a ‘ladder of opportunity’ theme, took place in February.

During the week, we focussed on the experiences of Deputy Chief Executive and Chief Financial Officer, Rob Griffiths (40) and Georgina Digby (22), a trainee accountant in Rob’s team.

Rob joined the organisation as a 16-year-old apprentice in 1994 and has since progressed to the top of the company, while Georgina started her apprenticeship in 2010.

“Doing an apprenticeship is a great way of learning new skills in the real world,” said Rob.

It’s also a fantastic way to bring new talent to the business and give people the opportunity to learn new skills across different areas that could lead to a full-time career.

“I combined it with doing a professional qualification and gained valuable knowledge around the way the whole finance area works.”

In his 23 years with the organisation, Rob has worked in various roles with the finance team, gaining experience in a number of areas. His first management role came in 1999 and he became the Group’s Chief Financial Officer in 2006.

Georgina Digby, a trainee accountant in the Finance Team, has taken inspiration from Rob’s progression and is also looking to climb the ladder. 

“The best thing about being an apprentice is learning on the job and gaining experience that is just as valuable as qualifications,” Georgina said.

It is really inspiring to hear how an Executive Director, like Rob, started as an apprentice with the same organisation. It just proves that university is not the only route you can take to establish a really good career."

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