Nineteen-year-old Lewis Boote, is the Technology & Systems Assistant at DOORCO and part of the company’s apprenticeship scheme.
Why an apprenticeship?
I chose an apprenticeship because I thought it would be a great way to get involved with the real world of work and learn so much more than just studying at college. In my opinion this is the best way to kickstart my career.
There was a couple of things that attracted me to a manufacturing company. Firstly, it offers an interesting career path with many future opportunities. Secondly, even though my role is not to specifically manufacture a door, the whole process is very interesting and exciting, and technology plays a big part in making this happen efficiently.
DOORCO stood out to me in a very positive way. I liked how it was quickly growing and still quite a young company, plus it is fairly local to me. Researching the company’s website showed me how well presented it is and the amount of potential it offers from a technology point of view. I’ve never really paid much attention to doors, in fact I was never really interested in them at all, and I certainly never thought I’d be as interested in specific door designs for my own house as I am now!
What was the recruitment process? How did you find it and what was the biggest challenge?
After I passed my course in Macclesfield College, I was thinking about the next steps for my career. The college talked to us about apprenticeships and the idea appealed to me. So, I began on the Government website applying for different IT apprenticeships that I thought would suit me. As some of those were processed through the Macclesfield College’s apprenticeship scheme, I received a call from the College. They provided more options to apply for and of those opportunities was DOORCO. When I heard about the company and the potential to get a full-time job after the apprenticeship, it sounded perfect to me and I knew this was a great opportunity. I went for an interview at DOORCO and thankfully got the job!
What is your role at DOORCO?
I support the day to day processes technology-wise, as well as testing new processes to improve the business. I input new data that needs to be added to the system, for example if we are introducing a new glass design for our doors, I upload all details so it is ready to be ordered by the customers. I update price lists using photoshop and create weekly/monthly reports to analyse the product statistic for that period ie Door sales, most ordered glass or hardware options, most popular colour choice etc. I also help customers on any issues with our systems and support my manager Ben with any tasks that I can assist on.
What skills have you learnt so far?
I have been here five months and already gained a lot of skills, like working with custom business software, how to test efficiently, how to troubleshoot technical issues proficiently, how to upgrade server settings, strip down/upgrade a PC successfully, swapping over phone extensions (Re-patching in the server room) and managing the new clocking-on system for the staff members. I have also learned other skills like speaking with confidence in person/over the phone and how to prioritise/complete tasks in a fast-paced environment.
How do you find the juggle between college and work?
In work I have responsibilities which I enjoy and means that when I am attending and learning at college, I can see how developing new techniques and improving my IT knowledge can be applied in work. This makes me enthusiastic to learn even more.
Would you recommend an apprenticeship?
I would most definitely recommend an apprenticeship. Being paid for working in the real world, whilst learning on the job as well, is definitely a win-win situation for me. Not forgetting the chance to be fully employed by the company at the end of the apprenticeship and giving me the opportunity to be able to have a much bigger role in this business.
What are you next steps, aspirations for the future?
To develop in DOORCO, facilitate the IT side of things and maybe take on a managerial role as DOORCO keeps growing and expanding.