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Celebrating a spectacular achievement in our IT Department

We caught up with Data Analyst Emma Staynings, who just completed her apprenticeship with flying colors, to learn about the invaluable lessons she took away and what exciting opportunities await her in the future.

What apprenticeship course did you take and why?

I studied the Level 4 Data Analyst apprenticeship over the course of 18 months. I chose this apprenticeship because it was a great opportunity to gain further my knowledge and obtain a formal qualification for my existing role. It also taught me new skills and methodologies I can apply to my work.

Tell us about the important things you learned during the apprenticeship.

I learned about the legislation, policies, and standards we have in place for handling and processing and storing data. Understanding this is important as I need to ensure I am compliant when handling and managing data for people and correct and effective processes are followed.

My course also explored data modelling and machine learning. This included how to design, build, and test a Predictive Analytics Model to extract information from data using code to then test and train the model to make automated predictions.

Finally, I learnt how to apply project management skills to bring together all the elements of my course in a final analysis project and presentation.

How will the apprenticeship help you do your current job?

The apprenticeship taught me new approaches to data analysis and processing data effectively: for example, I have had the chance to learn SQL code to query and organise data. I am now starting to apply this to to extract and organise data for some reports.

What advice would you give someone who is considering starting an apprenticeship?

It’s worthwhile doing if you get the opportunity. It will expand on the skills you already have and teach you new ones. Sometimes, it can be challenging but it gives you a chance to learn and gain a qualification in your field.  

What challenges did you face during your apprenticeship?

The greatest challenge for me were the modules on statistical analysis and predictive modelling. The calculations can be run using code but understanding the theory behind it and how to interpret the results was a steep learning curve!

I also had to pass my GCSE maths to complete the course. I had a lot of anxiety about this after failing at school, but my functional skills tutor was fantastic and thankfully I passed!

"I’d like to thank the company for the opportunity to gain this qualification and my managers and team for all the support whilst I’ve been studying."

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