Kieran grills one of our former apprentices, Luke Pritchard, on his experiences and why he chose to stay with ClickThrough after his qualification.
“I’VE KEPT THE MINDSET OF CONSTANTLY WANTING TO LEARN” – LUKE PRITCHARD TELLS US ABOUT GOING FROM APPRENTICE TO UX DESIGNER
Something that’s become very quickly apparent is that I’m far from the only apprentice (or former apprentice!) here at ClickThrough. As I’ve been learning more about Digital Marketing, it’s been exciting to see how many of my colleagues started with ClickThrough as an apprentice themselves.
As part of my social takeover for National Apprenticeship week, I took the chance to ask UX Designer Luke Pritchard about his experiences as an apprentice at ClickThrough, and why he decided to stick around!
To begin with, what apprenticeship with ClickThrough Marketing did you take and was it an easy process?
I did the level 3 digital marketing apprenticeship, but I was a UX designer apprentice. Process wise, the in-house learning was flexible, I had to go into college a few times a week to Tamworth college and undertook lessons there.
What made you apply for this role? And was it an area of interest to you already?
Before I did the apprenticeship, I did a graphics and illustration diploma at college beforehand, so I was already interested in graphics & design, along with web design. I applied at ClickThrough as I already had done 9 months of work-experience with the business for college, coming in every Monday. ClickThrough then offered the apprenticeship to me after my work experienced was finished.
How was the apprenticeship journey? Was everything as expected?
Everything was as expected throughout the apprenticeship, but I was very unlucky as my apprenticeship provider went into liquidation at the end of my 12-month course, just before my exams and coursework were to be finished! The huge benefit of doing an apprenticeship though, is that ClickThrough had seen me first-hand in the workplace and knew how much I’d learnt so they offered me a job straight away – they knew I was so much more than just a piece of paper!
It was Matt who managed me. He used to be an apprentice at his old company and has worked his way up to head of department, so obviously he’s taken me through my apprenticeship path. Now I’ve took an apprentice on under me, so I’ll have a similar experience to what Matt had with me – it’s interesting to be on the other side of it!
What was your biggest challenge as an apprentice? Is there anything you would have done differently?
The balance of trying to get to a point where I was happy with ClickThrough workload and my apprenticeship work as a challenge. Obviously at ClickThrough you’re trying to go above and beyond to make a good impression but then, at the same time, you can’t forget about the apprenticeship work that you need to complete. You get so wrapped up in the work you enjoy doing that it’s easy to lose track of the priority of other tasks!
If I were to do something differently I would have spent more time with other departments. I did manage to get in a little a bit of time learning about other departments, but realise that if I would have continuously attempted to organise meetings or catchups with other people in the business I’d have gained a better view on what everyone does in the business - perhaps that would have helped me achieve more in my apprentice work. It’s easy to get a tunnel vision mindset to a certain extent, as you can get took up with what you’re doing in your team without seeing the bigger picture.
What did you think of the staff, culture, and workplace during your time here? And has it changed much since?
The culture has been brilliant - from the moment I arrived I felt very welcomed by the company. As an apprentice it can be pretty nervy as it’s like starting a new job, but luckily I did 9 months of work experience so already knowing people really helped. The culture itself is brilliant, everyone is friendly and willing to help you, plus there’s the culture of growth has helped me adapt and progress in my role. Since I’ve been here I’ve kept that apprenticeship mindset of constantly wanting and needing to learn to expand my knowledge, but I can see everyone in the business also has a similar mindset to this.
Was the transition going from apprentice to the full-time UX designer role a challenge?
Although my role was more challenging as a UX designer rather than apprentice, the transition wasn’t a challenge because I had learned a lot about my role already. I had established myself into the team already as part of a fully working department, so I was aware of the role itself and the responsibilities that came alongside it.
What advice would you give to current/future apprentices?
As mentioned before, I would integrate as much as much as possible with every department at ClickThrough. But as well as this I’d say to make the most of any learning opportunities by joining as many knowledge shares and webinars as possible to learn from your colleagues - they can offer so much information from being in the industry for such a long time.
What are your future goals?
I would like our department to onboard clients that are big names in their industry, and then we can increase performance and get results for these clients… it would be great to work on an account like that! In terms of personal goals, I would like to manage perhaps more than one person at a time or even continue to nurture people who are coming into the department at a low level and want to learn. I’d also like to maybe advance into more of a specialist role in the department.
I’d really like to create my own product/process similarly to Matt’s data lead design that has been trademarked as a process we use in our department to optimise designs and websites. To come up with something like that in which becomes used by the company as a successful department tool would be great!
Follow us on our social channels to find out more about being an apprentice with ClickThrough!