Working with the IEP (What a 'Work Experience')
by Alex Bissett, Administrative Assistant
I began working with the IEP in October 2016; I was referred for the job role as an Administration Assistant through an organisation called Tower Hamlets Employment Services, previously known as Skillsmatch, where I was working towards an NVQ in administration and business.
I am so glad that I had the opportunity to have completed my 25-week work experience programme with the IEP. My experience has been nothing but beneficial, I have learned so many valuable skills and more about myself and my capabilities.
The support in which I have received from the organisation as well as my line manager, Thisara David, has been extremely valuable, and I really feel that the experience has made me an asset to any company now willing to hire me.
My confidence, communication and team working have developed considerably over the period of 5 months. I was able to maintain a project which involved communicating through email and telephone calls with various staff members within other companies and charities in order for them to help us develop a series of guides named '10 Things Guides'. These guides are for Job Advisors who work with those who may have various barriers into work. It was then my job to keep our system updated with the regular changes of the development of the guides in regards to each organisation. For example, one guide could be completed whilst another needed a follow up. Through this work my communication skills developed especially through email, my wording and formatting developed as well as my spelling and punctuation and as each week went by my confidence in speaking to a variety of people over the phone had developed significantly. I went from being very nervous to feeling relaxed and being able to make many phone calls.
This experience showed me what working life is like within a business, which was the career path I had set for myself. I understand now how work can seem repetitive or boring at times but you need to stay committed.
Now that my time at the IEP is coming to an end I have come to the realisation that business administration is no longer the career for me. I have decided to follow my previous qualifications in health and social care and have been recently employed as a care worker. I think that this job will be more suitable for me as it is more hands-on and practical. I have really enjoyed my time working for the IEP and meeting all of the wonderful members of staff, and I will be sad to leave.
Thisara David, IEP's Head of Operations, said 'Alex’s experience has been such that she has learnt a number of new skills and enhanced the ones she already had. We see it, very much as a positive outcome that she came and tried something, did very well, but has decided to follow a previous career path. The confidence this work experience has given her will stand her in good stead for the challenges ahead and we wish her very well in her new job.'