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Daniel's blog: 30 March 2017

Thursday 30 March 2017 2.50pm

Daniel Robinson, Business Administration Apprentice at Hoople

Hello! I’m Daniel and I’ve been working at Hoople’s Training and Education department for about six months. To think that I’m already half way through my apprenticeship! Too bad I’m still not entirely sure with what I am going to do afterwards.

Now let me address the elephant in the room about why I am posting this month’s blog post less than a week from April. Nothing extraordinary has happened this month at the training centre that I haven’t written about before—however, I was more recently invited to spend a day with Jan and James in Hoople’s Marketing team for some additional work experience.

Believe it or not, I have always had an interest in marketing—specifically advertising. In fact, it’s one of the reasons that I had wanted to do an apprenticeship in Business and Administration in the first place. Before I was employed by Hoople, I tried applying to do my apprenticeship at a marketing firm in Hereford. Unfortunately, marketing apprenticeships are fiercely competitive and I didn’t make the cut. Looking back, it probably would have helped if I had not turned up partially late to the interview since I couldn’t find the building without calling them about ten minutes before the interview. I guess I didn’t leave the best impression with that stunt. However, I try not to think about it since I’m more than happy with my current position with the Contracts team, and plus I would not have had the opportunity to write up these blog posts!

So going back to my day with the marketing team at Hoople’s main office, the day started off with a grand tour of the entire building, including the Hoople and Council offices. I was surprised when I found out how many people work for Hoople. As I probably mentioned in one of my previous blogs, I know next to nothing about Hoople outside of its Apprenticeship sector, so when Jan gave me a very detailed rundown of all of Hoople’s operations and objectives, I learned that the apprenticeship programme was only a small piece of a large jigsaw puzzle—and how much my head was hurting afterwards!

But after the explanation, I had the chance to join a meeting to discuss improvements to the Hoople website. Although I didn’t have much of an opinion on the website, I learned an enormous amount about how the website was managed in the background, and the process of how an idea becomes a plan, and how that plan can be developed.

Moving on, after the meeting I spent the rest of the morning watching James create a rough draft in Adobe Photoshop of what the website should look like after the improvements. The level of detail needed is outstanding and James spent upwards of three hours fine tuning a single webpage to guarantee that the illustration matched the website specifications, including consistent spacing between boxes.

After lunch, I was set the task of drafting an online survey to be sent to several schools in Herefordshire. Although it went well at the beginning, the survey did go a bit pear shaped after Jan and I attempted to add multiple routes, depending on the choices the user made. It got really confusing so we went back to the beginning and started again! Thankfully the second design was much easier to work with and we finished the task by the end of the afternoon.  I was proud of the finished product, despite the bumpy start.

So with that, the day came to a close and I had to get ready for returning to my usual job with the Contracts team the next day. I had really enjoyed my day with the Marketing team since it’s an entirely different atmosphere to the one at the training centre, especially since I was able to gain experience in a field that I would like to pursue after my apprenticeship. So I’m very grateful that I had the chance to be part of the Marketing team for a day. In all, I have been invited to attend four sessions with the team so I will be back next week to attend the Hereford Means Business expo with Jan!

Thank you for reading this month’s blog post and I hope you had enjoyed reading it.

Daniel Robinson, Business Administration Apprentice at Hoople

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