Grady Taylor – Public-i’s first apprentice – has written this blog post about his first few months of apprentice life.
The days are long now…
From an average college student studying Information Technology three days a week to working full-time as Public-i’s first apprentice service desk officer at nineteen years old is no small step, more like a gargantuan leap. But I can safely say the impacts of the five-floor office complex that is my livelihood at Public-i have been great; academically as well as socially. The journey so far has been a smooth and bumpy ride, so here’s a brief run-through of how being an apprentice has affected my life, and of the everyday duties and situations I encounter.
Since I started on August 10th 2015, I can honestly say my life has never been better. The experience of learning in a professional office environment with skilled, talented individuals is a worthy opportunity, but this is only the beginning. Socially, everyone at Public-i is treated fairly and equally and my fellow colleagues are supporting me every step of the way through my apprenticeship. Of course, as part of my apprenticeship I still have coursework to do, and my tutor meets with me at work once a month. The early starts and late finishes have had a big impact: it’s a quite severe change from spending six hours in a classroom three times a week. Truly, the days are long now, but I’m aware the younger I learn to adapt to these changes, the more it will benefit me for the future.
The first taste of providing technical support had its fair share of flavours – especially to someone who has only experienced a classroom environment where information is provided and learnt. As a result of my industrial inexperience, I found it very difficult to adjust to the role of customer service during my first couple of months. However the taste has gotten sweeter with a dose of hard work, a hint of determination, and some additional flavouring from the people I work with on the helpdesk who enable a happy and productive working environment.
So what’s an average day like for me at Public-i? Well I will spare you the details of getting up at silly o’clock, enduring the monotonous train journey and finally, the twenty minute linear walk down Western Road to Sheridan House. The very first job is to login to the Public-i monitoring software and ensure clients have tested with sufficient audio and video for their meetings. Then I can begin the next task of uploading previous meetings that have already streamed live – while dealing with client enquires over email, phone or the messenger. It can be a fast-paced, action-packed role – especially on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday where my colleague Glen, manager Dan and I have lots of meetings to monitor. We also log all client issues in a ticketing system that enable us to easily reference information and provide updates on the statuses of jobs. My personal favourite action is selecting ‘Closed’ under the ‘Status’ heading of a ticket, because closing tickets feels satisfying to the client and to myself as an apprentice.
Let’s just say, like any job I have good and bad days, but it’s the good ones that make me realise how lucky I am to end up in such a healthy and thriving company with the reliable support of Glen who I consider not only a colleague, but a good friend. Here’s to career progress and to the future of Public-i.