Catherine is a current Finance Higher Apprentice at BAE Systems’ Land business in Washington. People on the Level 4 Finance Apprenticeship complete the CIMA Diploma in Business Accounting over a two-year period. The apprentices study alongside learning the relevant skills and behaviours to be successful in their role by being exposed to a variety of finance roles.
Speaking about her apprenticeship, Catherine said: “Within my role, which I started in 2016, I manage and report on the costs associated with my site. I hold monthly cost reviews with on-site management team to review their actual spend in comparison to their budget. I am responsible for on-site capital spend, which I report on at both a site-level and across Land UK.”
Catherine also acts as the contact at her site for queries relating to subjects such labour costs and how many hours have been worked across the site. Catherine has enjoyed having the responsibility from this and hopes it will help her going forward in her career, “I like being based at this site because everyone is always more than happy to help and I’ve been given real responsibility from day one. My apprenticeship finished in October 2018 and during the final few months I’m hoping to broaden my knowledge by working in project accounting, working on specific projects with the project managers. Ultimately though, I’d like to continue with a role in cost base management accounting.”
For people who are considering applying for an apprenticeship at BAE Systems, Catherine has the following advice, “I would advise them to do their research as BAE Systems offer a lot of apprenticeships so you won’t be short on choice - research the company and their chosen scheme then go for it. By doing the research, you will be confident going into the interview stages and confidence is important. The more enthusiastic and confident you are the more opportunities will come your way. As an apprentice you are also given a lot of opportunities outside the normal day job for example, I do reverse mentoring where I mentor a director and the Apprentice Innovation Challenge, which are excellent opportunities.”