Opting for Apprenticeships Instead of University Proves the Right Choice for Six New Starters at ProcessFlows

 Six apprentices working at Winchester based business process solution provider, ProcessFlows, all agree that the main reason for taking the apprentice route, rather than university, is because they didn’t want to get saddled with student loans.

The apprentices are at varying stages of their apprenticeships and are affiliated to different organisations – Eastleigh College and PETA Training and Consultancy Services in Portsmouth. 

Apprentice roles within ProcessFlows are designed to complement college courses and time is factored into the working week to accommodate curriculum work. 

ProcessFlows has the support of trainers and assessors, who visit apprentices in the workplace at regular intervals.

Managing Director Chris Thompson said; “Working with apprentices has been a real success story.  Offering apprenticeships enables us to recruit new talent and fill specific gaps in our workforce, without incurring recruitment and training costs. The apprentices are paid from day one and learn valuable new skills along the way, so everyone benefits.”

A bit about each of the apprentices:

Rachel Langston

Rachel is the longest serving apprentice and has been working in the ProcessFlows Marketing Department since 2012. She has already completed her NVQ Level 2 in Business Administration and is now working towards completing Level 3, with a view to continuing her career in the ProcessFlows Marketing Team.

Rachel said; “It’s great to be able to learn new skills whilst earning a salary. My days are very varied.  I can be tasked with anything from office administration, website work or collating reports, through to running webinars, attending client and partner events and helping to organise the company Christmas party. My role has helped to build my confidence and I’ve learnt a lot about marketing and the benefits of business process solutions in real business environments.”

Billie McClelland

Billie joined ProcessFlows’ Marketing Team in March 2014. She is currently working towards a Business and Administration NVQ Level 2 qualification.

Billie said she chose an apprenticeship because college never fully appealed to her in the way working and earning a wage did, but she still wanted to gain more qualifications.

“An apprenticeship is a brilliant choice for me. Working, whilst learning, suits me better than college based learning. ProcessFlows is an inspiring company to work for with a great working environment. I am looking forward to progressing within the company and learning new skills which will enable me to complete tasks independently and further contribute to marketing” said Billie.

Amy Such

Amy started her Business and Administration NVQ Level 2 apprenticeship in March 2014. Working as a Junior Receptionist, Amy has already learnt new computer skills and telephone call handing. She also takes responsibility for the photocopying and distribution of documents and post, and books flights and hotels for managers.

Amy commented; “Going to university wasn’t an option for me because of the cost. The apprenticeship is giving me the opportunity to start work straight away and find out what office administration is all about. I’ve learnt a lot of new skills in the time I’ve been at ProcessFlows. I’m now looking forward to new challenges and responsibility.”

Jamie Simmonds

Two week’s work experience at ProcessFlows led to a full-time apprenticeship for Jamie, who is now working towards an NVQ Level 2 in Business Administration. Jamie’s role is Digital Marketing Assistant, which encompasses website design and coding work and helping create digital and paper documentation for marketing campaigns.

Jamie said; “Having good computer and communication skills is important to me. It’s easier to develop these skills in a practical, need-driven working environment than it would have been in college, which is why I chose to pursue the apprentice opportunity at ProcessFlows.”


Steve McMahon and Dan Lorek

The thought of accumulating big debts and concerns about getting a job to pay them off when they finished university made little sense to Steve or Dan, so they opted for an apprenticeship.

“Colleges strongly promote taking the university route, but it isn’t right for everyone. Other opportunities are out there and you shouldn’t feel pressurised into going to university because all your friends are” said Steve.

Steve and Dan are both working with ProcessFlows technical support team. They are doing their Level 3 Apprenticeship Diploma Component Flexiqual, which gives them the flexibility to tailor their course modules in line with the jobs they are doing and benefit from online learning facilities.

Alix Tatham, Client Services Manager at ProcessFlows said; “Steve and Dan have become invaluable members of the support team. In the year they have been with us, they have graduated to full tier-1 helpdesk engineers within their relevant product sets. Working both independently and with the guidance of more senior engineers when required, they provide technical email and telephone support for ProcessFlows customers as well as admin support to ProcessFlows senior helpdesk engineers.”

Business benefits and summary:

·         Businesses offering apprenticeships will find it easier to recruit new talent.

·         Apprentices help an organisation to improve productivity and be more competitive.

·         Fills niche gaps in the workforce.

·         Enables you to plan for the forecasted skills gap.

·         Lower recruitment costs.

·         Government funding available.

“I would recommend to any business wanting to attract high calibre young talent to find out about apprenticeship schemes. Our apprentices are motivated and committed members of the workforce, fulfilling roles which add real value to the business. The Government has made it much easier for companies to take on apprentices and funding is available to incentivise employers” said Chris Thompson.

About ProcessFlows www.processflows.co.uk

ProcessFlows, based in the centre of Winchester, Hampshire, is a leading provider of solutions and services designed to improve business processes and communications. Since 1987, ProcessFlows has helped thousands of businesses, local councils and government departments to increase efficiency, improve customer service and implement controls for regulatory compliance. ProcessFlows combines business process expertise with market leading technology to provide flexible applications and workflows that augment existing systems and can be deployed quickly to provide a fast return on investment. 

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