THE FUTURE LOOKS BRIGHT FOR ALDI’S APPRENTICES
Adam Radley started on the Aldi Apprentice Scheme in August 2011 as part of an initial pilot for the programme, and now works in Aldi’s Failsworth store as an Assistant Store Manager after rapidly progressing within the business.
After leaving college, Adam recognised that a university course wasn’t for him, despite all his friends embarking on a degree course at various universities around the country. He said: “When I left college I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I was a bit naughty at college to be honest, and I knew that university wasn’t really for me.”
As an alternative to university, Adam initially took up a full time position at a local pub where he had worked during his studies at college. He said: “The job at the pub was alright, but I saw it as just a job, not a career, and that’s what I wanted – a career.”
Adam, whose hobbies include sports and socialising, first heard of the Apprentice Scheme via the National Apprenticeship Service website and realised the potential to further his career.
Adam secured his place on the scheme after working with the Manchester College on finalising his application, and after undergoing a work trial, began his apprenticeship almost straight away.
Whilst Adam found the interview process thorough although reasonably straightforward, he said: “My advice to people applying would be to participate as much as they can in the group interview as it really shows off your leadership skills. The scheme itself was challenging but I found it very rewarding and worthwhile.”
The Aldi Apprentice Scheme is suited to people who not only lead by example, but have motivation and a ‘get up and go attitude’ to inspire others. In return, the scheme provides hands-on training with the ability to progress to Store Management (with a starting salary of £26,500), after a successful 3 years completing the apprenticeship.
Since joining Aldi as an Apprentice, Adam has developed both professionally and personally. Learning on the job while earning a wage allowed him to achieve things sooner than many of his friends. He said: “Since I started working at Aldi, I’ve come out of my shell a lot more. I’ve been able to do things that I never thought I would be able to at my age. For example, I’ve just bought my first house and I am buying my own car.”
The scheme’s hands-on training consists of anything from till-work, merchandising and managing a team, all whilst gaining an invaluable insight into the workings of an Aldi store. Adam says, “The best part of the job is definitely gaining new skills – you’re learning all the time. The worst part is probably sweeping up but it all counts toward the overall look of the store and customer experience so is a vital part of the job.”
Adam started the scheme with ambitions of becoming an Assistant Store Manager, a role that he was offered after only three years at the company in recognition of his exceptional performance throughout the scheme.
When asked what advice he would give to someone applying to the scheme, Adam said:
“My best advice would be just to apply, as long as you see it as a genuine career path. It’s such a great opportunity to have a career in retail management without having to have a degree. You gain qualifications whilst on the scheme and have the opportunity to apply for middle management once completed.”
The Aldi Apprentice Scheme offers students a rounded experience of a business environment as well as developing their own personal skills as leaders.
Quick fire question round:
How was your experience on the scheme? What aspects of the programme have:
a) Surprised you
- The fast paced environment and the level of work required
b) Been daunting
- Learning new procedures and generally learning how to do a new job
- Knowing that I contribute to the success of my store
- Working in a fast paced retail environment