Robert Jeffery – Lloyd’s insurance apprentice
I started the apprenticeship scheme in September 2017, following on from a nice relaxing summer after finishing my A-levels. Prior to the programme I attended a sixth form in Kent where I studied Psychology, Geography and Sociology; three subjects that are entirely different in comparison to the sector I now work in, but I don’t feel that this has hindered me at all during my time here.
As part of the scheme I will gain the Cert Chartered Insurance Institute [hyperlink to CII website] qualification, which will involve me completing three multiple choice exams. The exams will take place throughout the course of the year at the nearest test centre to you, and your course is funded by Lloyd’s as part of the scheme. A textbook is provided for each exam and you are allocated six hours of study time per week which helps immensely with the work load – I would suggest using all of this valuable time to ensure success.
My apprenticeship scheme involves five placements each lasting three months. This is slightly different for me because I am completing my apprenticeship from the Chatham office in Medway, rather than the Lloyd’s building in the City of London along with Courtney who started a finance apprenticeship at the same time as me . I will move round the Lloyd’s Corporation for the first nine months, followed by a placement in a broking house in London before finishing up back in Chatham in the Corporation.
I am currently working in the market services team where my role involves overseeing and managing funds at Lloyd’s, whether this may be for syndicates or individuals. The end of the year is a very busy time of the year, which is called ‘coming into line’. This is where the syndicates have to put forward enough capital to fund their underwriting for the forthcoming year and it’s been interesting to be involved in this process. I have also attended multiple meetings with different syndicates which are hugely beneficial in improving your business interaction skills whilst also learning more about the industry.
After I finish my current placement I will be starting a new role in the distribution team, followed by three months in the compliance department.
I would advise anyone starting the scheme to not be worried at all. When I first started the scheme everything seemed so daunting; I was worried that if I made a mistake that it will reflect badly on me. However, I have found that if you do make mistakes, people will help you to overcome them and learn from them – It’s not quite the drama you think it’s going to be! Thankfully, at the moment I couldn’t be further away from how I felt at the start of the scheme. I felt very much part of the team straight away and they made sure I settled in quickly. One of the best things is that I am treated as an employee like everyone else and not just as ‘the apprentice’ . Your ideas and queries will be listened to and encouraged no matter how silly you think they are. Before joining I wish that I would have been told this information in order to relieve some of the worries that I had. I feel it is easy to have pre-conceived ideas regarding this sector of work but working in Lloyd’s has completely changed my views and I am thoroughly enjoying my time here so far. I was stunned at the responsibility that I have been given in regard to my work and dealing with this provides a huge sense of satisfaction which I hope continues throughout my scheme.