This week is National Apprenticeship Week, and as part of it, we’re celebrating some of our own apprenticeship success stories. We sat down with some of our valued colleagues who have been through the apprenticeship process, to gain their thoughts, insight, and any advice they have for others who may be considering apprenticeships.

Lizzie Clements

Lizzie is currently studying for her Level 5 Operations and Departmental Manager qualification. We sat down with Lizzie to discuss the benefits of learning through an apprenticeship, and her experiences:

Hi Lizzie! What is your role at SBFM and could you talk us through some of your day-to-day responsibilities?

Hi! I’m Head of Helpdesk at SBFM looking after a team of 20 who handle thousands of calls every day. SBFM has so many colleagues and customers all across the UK, and for many of them, the helpdesk is their main point of contact. It’s my responsibility to ensure we deliver a high level of service to them. This includes supporting with time and attendance, holidays, sickness, service requests and various other requirements. I also work closely with other departments to streamline processes to ensure we are working efficiently.

Can you give an overview of the sort of projects you have been involved in since starting at SBFM?

I work on lots of projects and get involved in all sorts of areas. The most common projects I work on are mobilisations, which involve the onboarding of new colleagues to our systems and supporting them with their transfer to SBFM. Other projects include creating and implementing new processes to streamline our business and how we interact with other departments.

What made you want to start down the apprentice route?

I really wanted to further my skills. I’ve enjoyed rapid progression with SBFM, but I wanted to enhance my qualifications so that I would be prepared for the future. Through my apprenticeship, I can work and learn at the same time, and I really enjoy the hands-on experience. I also love putting what I’ve learnt into practice within my role and day-to-day work.

How have you found learning while working?

Managing my daily workload and my learning can be challenging at times. But seeing the benefits of the learning and being able to apply it within my work is so rewarding, and it motivates me to keep learning more and more.

What do you see for your future?

Definitely with SBFM, but I’m not sure in what role. I’m excited to see how my colleagues and the wider team develop and I’d love to continue working with them, ensuring they reach their career goals and supporting wherever I possibly can. 

What advice would you give to people considering their career options, especially if they’re considering an apprenticeship as an alternative to university?

I would definitely recommend it. The apprenticeship programme gives recognised qualifications, and you can earn and learn at the same time. I know some people can struggle to secure full employment without experience, so apprenticeships definitely give you the best of both worlds, without the student loans!


Thank you, Lizzy!