‘I was at rock bottom until I became a FedEx apprentice – it’s changed my life’

Launched in September 2014, the FedEx Apprenticeship Scheme identifies and nurtures talented young individuals while equipping them with the skills to thrive in the modern workplace. The UK is currently experiencing a skills shortage in key industries, including engineering, therefore the FedEx Apprenticeship Scheme provides an opportunity to recruit and train crucial talent. The initiative focuses on teaching the leaders and innovators of tomorrow while allowing FedEx to give back to the communities it serves.

With hundreds of thousands of young people planning their futures based on their GSCE and A-level results, offering multiple routes for skilled careers and long-term training is increasingly important – an apprenticeship offers an alternative, giving young people the chance to learn and earn. Here, Shane Carter, 23-years old, an Engineering Technician based in Stoke, tells his story.

How it began

“In 2011, I used to work as an electrical apprentice in Derby before I was unexpectedly made redundant. I then took on odd jobs, such as cleaning, to get by but was determined not to be discouraged from finding the next opportunity. I then moved to Stoke and saw the listing for the FedEx scheme through the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS). I jumped at the chance and was over the moon to be invited to an open day the following day. I couldn’t believe it when they told me I’d been selected shortly afterwards.

“The opportunity to learn on the job with a world-famous company like FedEx was exactly what I’d been looking for. I started in 2014 and embraced the learning curve straight away – my previous experience had been limited to electrical engineering so I needed to build my knowledge on the mechanical side of things too. I knew I had to prove myself by working my way up and was dead-set on showing my potential.”

Getting started

“When I started my apprenticeship, I worked four days a week and went to college for one day studying electrical and mechanical maintenance. Managing coursework with my work and personal life wasn’t always easy but I was lucky to have had a supportive team who were always on hand for any advice or encouragement. Since finishing college, I’m now working towards completing an NVQ 3 in electrical maintenance. By the time I finish my three-year apprenticeship in September, I will gain a Level 3 Technical Certificate as well as a huge amount of on-the-job skills and real-world experience.”

The role

“My day-to-day roles and responsibilities include performing regular maintenance on machinery at FedEx hubs and depots across the country. This might be performing planned maintenance or repairs, responding to any breakdowns, completing inspection reports and any other general maintenance duties needed at the time. I love the variety and that no two days are ever the same as well as getting out and about visiting towns and cities around the UK. I’m incredibly lucky to enjoy getting up each morning and look forward to going to work.”

How my life changed

“It’s hard to overstate how grateful I am to FedEx for this whole experience. My colleagues and managers are unfailingly helpful, friendly and supportive and worked hard to create a supportive environment where I could reach my full potential. I’m particularly proud to have advanced along the apprenticeship smoothly and steadily, gradually accruing more responsibility and expanding my role. In September, I hope to get a permanent contract to continue my career at FedEx.

“The apprenticeship has hugely benefitted me both personally and professionally. Since working and training with FedEx, everything’s changed for the better. I’ve been able to take driving lessons, buy a car and improve life at home for my girlfriend and daughter. It’s also transformed my professional outlook and potential. My workplace confidence, professional skills and practical experience are at an all-time high – and I owe it all to FedEx.

“I’m always looking to continue advancing, learning new skills and earning more qualifications and I’m lucky to have a manager so supportive of my personal and professional development. There’s a serious skills shortage in this country and an apprenticeship is a fantastic opportunity to earn and learn at the same time and I hope to see more opportunities in the future.

Emma Sutherland, HR Services Manager, UK & Ireland, FedEx Express Europe, says…

“At FedEx, we’re extremely proud of all our apprentices – they’re committed members of the team. Our apprentices don’t just learn from us, we learn a lot from them. They offer new ideas and ways of thinking, while their enthusiasm and commitment adds dynamism and passion to their teams – contributing to the business’ growth and innovation.

“We believe it’s extremely important for companies to educate the next generation, as they have the expertise and influence to pass on vital skills and knowledge. Once an apprentice gains their qualifications the learning shouldn’t stop, and companies like ours can provide opportunities for employees to develop and hone their skills as well as gain the qualifications needed to enhance their careers.”

Source: Uk Haulier

‘I was at rock bottom until I became a FedEx apprentice – it’s changed my life’

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