Reflecting on my GCS Apprenticeship

After my GCS apprenticeship, I started at the Driver Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) in Bristol. I’ve now been here a total of 10 months!

One of my roles is Media Manager. This means that I handle press inquiries related to the consequences of driving and operating vehicles unfit for the road. My other role includes being Social Media Manager, which involves curating, planning and creating digital content that goes out on all our social media platforms. 

Has the apprenticeship helped you get where you are today?

Definitely. The apprenticeship teaches you skills and knowledge that you just can’t gain anywhere else. You are doing the actual job whilst learning about it. You can always decide throughout the apprenticeship how much work you want to take on and what you are and are not comfortable doing. After you successfully complete your apprenticeship, you have the opportunity to apply for higher grade roles within the Civil Service. My team at the Ministry of Defence (MOD) were always really helpful and understanding of my apprenticeship. They were really supportive and explained everything that I needed to know. They also taught me so much that I was able to transfer my new knowledge and skills into my current role.

What would you have done differently?

I would have asked far more questions at the start of my apprenticeship. As an apprentice, it is expected that you won’t know everything. If you did, you wouldn’t need to be an apprentice.  I also would have been more proactive in asking to be involved in as many things as possible! I started doing this later in my apprenticeship, but my main advice would be sign yourself up for anything when you first join. Not only is it a great way to learn, but it is also a great way to meet and work with so many interesting and different new people across so many different roles. It gives you a real feel of the different departments and so many transferable skills that you can take anywhere.

What would you say to someone who is considering a GCS Apprenticeship?

It is an opportunity everyone wants. It gives you a real stepping stone into the world of the Civil Service and you can go to any department with it. You are earning whilst working, so you don’t have much to lose yet so much to gain. Even if you decide the career path isn’t for you, you have no debt at the end and still come out with a qualification recognised across the country in both the public and private sectors. The apprenticeship gives you a unique experience that you can’t find anywhere else!

Rufus Duncan, Driver Vehicle Standards Agency