I never planned to work for the government, least of all HMRC. But taking up a digital apprenticeship here is one of the best decisions I've made so far.
At school I didn’t excel in STEM subjects. I opted for languages. But one day in the college library I was searching for jobs and the Civil Service Fast Track apprenticeship appeared on screen. It offered 3 options: admin, finance and IT. Why I ticked that box next to IT was simple; I’m not afraid of challenge. Would it come naturally? No. Would I have to work hard at it? Definitely.
The fact is, it described an opportunity to have a significant impact on projects that affect the entire nation. That was enough to excite and enthral me.
I got the job and work for HMRC Digital. My team deliver national insurance and state pension services. After less than 2 years in software development, code contributions I’ve programmed are live in the public domain and used by more than 500,000 customers.
HMRC have the biggest digital operation in government with six modern, state-of-the-art digital delivery centres using the latest tools, including open source. With good career paths and award-winning talent and apprenticeship schemes they are a great place to work and develop my valuable skills.
This year I organised a team of 9 Digital apprentices to enter a national competition; the Brathay Apprenticeship Challenge, designed to test team-building, logistical, leadership and communication skills which was an amazing opportunity and HMRC backed us all the way.
I would encourage anyone who wants to work in an exciting, fast moving environment on projects making a difference to milllions of people, to apply for one of our 60 apprenticeship vacancies. Not only do you get to learn on real projects you also get supported to work towards real qualifications. I can genuinely say that I haven’t looked back since I joined HMRC.
By the way, I’ve recently joined a buddy system to be a guide and mentor for new digital apprentices so if you’re successful, I may see you soon.
Good luck, it’s worth it.
Amy is an Apprentice Software Developer. HMRC Digital have nominated Amy as IT Apprentice of the Year for the BCS IT Awards 2016.