My name is Jessica and I’m an apprentice in HM Land Registry’s in-house information technology (IT) function, Information Systems (commonly called IS). I started my apprenticeship in October 2016 and, at the time, I would never have imagined I would be enjoying going to work so much! Since starting in our Plymouth office, I’ve learnt how a digital team operates and how HM Land Registry delivers IT solutions for our business and citizen customers, as well as caseworker colleagues.
So far, I have been working in IT Solutions doing application development in a cross-functional agile team. The team includes a scrum master (team lead), product owner, technical architect, business analysts, user researcher, developers, designers, and testers. One of the key points of working in an agile team is that the agile process encourages teams to build quickly, test what they’ve built on an ongoing basis and constantly improve their work based on feedback.
The team I’m working in has been supporting the live solution of the digital Land Charges register. We’ve also been working on a way in which people can register and use one sign-in for both our Find property information and Property Alert services instead of having separate sign-ins for each.
Every day is different – one day I could be engaging with customers and contacts outside the team and another day I could be helping the team by coding solutions in Python, Flask or HTML/CSS. I have definitely progressed in my coding and testing knowledge.
Alongside my job, I have been studying towards a Level 3 ICT Professional Competence Diploma and the Level 3 IT Systems and Principles qualification. These two qualifications are part of the IT apprenticeship framework. I have been going to college every Friday where we have so far covered things such as customer care, how to improve as an information communications technology (ICT) professional, testing, security and networks.
We get a lot of support from HM Land Registry while completing the apprenticeship. We can speak to our line manager, a buddy or team lead about any unit of the apprenticeship coursework that we get stuck on. We meet with our line manager every week to provide feedback on how we are finding the apprenticeship so it can be improved for us and future IT apprentices who join HM Land Registry.
Outside of my normal work I am an active member of the IS Women’s Network and the Disabled Employee Network. I also had the opportunity to go to a school careers fair and talk to pupils and parents about my apprenticeship and why I like it working here, which has helped to improve my communication and presentation skills. I am now not afraid to stand up and give a presentation to my colleagues or members of the public.
If you are thinking of applying for an apprenticeship with us, I would say go for it. It’s an amazing experience and you learn so much on the job and at college too. If you are keen to gain real-life job experience which employers are looking for, an apprenticeship is definitely the answer.