Agnieszka Lenton, the GLA’s Learning and Organisational Development Manager, talks about welcoming 16 young apprentices to City Hall
On Monday 21 January, despite the snowy conditions which made journeys difficult, 16 young people arrived at City Hall to start their 12 month apprenticeships.
Seeing the GLA apprenticeship scheme grow from one apprentice in 2009, to 16 three years later, is extremely satisfying – certainly one of the highlights of my role in HR&OD! So was sharing their enthusiasm, anticipation and energy about joining the GLA teams working to make London a better place.
Day one was all about giving the new arrivals a warm welcome. Andrew Collinge (Assistant Director, Intelligence and Analysis) shared his take on the GLA, London and upcoming challenges for the capital. The apprentices also took a City Hall tour, got to know each other and found out more about what to expect here. Boris also surprised the apprentices by popping in to say ’Hi‘, and shake their hands – clearly the highlight of the day! He also assured the – enthusiastic yet still slightly anxious - apprentices they are in the “the best place, beginning on the ladder to life!’
Their pride in successfully securing an apprenticeship – ’being the top 16!’ was visible, following two rigorous assessment days of group exercises, tests and interviews. The apprentices clearly felt privileged to be here – and so are we, confident that we have the right people in terms of their potential, motivation and enthusiasm.
’Great meeting the other apprentices’, ’seeing City Hall‘, ’meeting Boris‘ were some of the comments made as the apprentices left to meet their teams after the induction. Further sessions later in the first week included a skills assessment to help the apprentices map out their individual apprenticeship programme to ensure it fits their individual roles, level of current competencies, and matches their career interests and aspirations.
Apart from formal induction sessions, in their first two weeks the apprentices have been busy getting to know their GLA teams, and clearly have bonded as a peer group - sharing lunchbreaks and their first impressions of the new workplace.
As the apprentices ease into their roles at the GLA, we’ll be publishing insights from them in the upcoming 12 months as part of this blog, and will let them do the talking next time!