South Central Apprentice of the Year Hayley James, became part of IBM UK’s 20,000 strong team in November 2010.  Hayley completed her Advanced Apprenticeship in IT in 2013 and is now working toward a Higher Apprenticeship.



Hayley JamesAfter finishing the International Baccalaureate and attracted by the benefits of vocational learning and being ‘work ready’ in an unstable job market, Hayley came to the conclusion that an Apprenticeship was her best option after college.

“I was attracted by the idea of getting myself on the career ladder as soon as possible,” says Hayley.  “I strongly believe that Apprenticeships provide the support and guidance needed when forging a career path, and I consider this to be an invaluable experience in a young professional’s career.”

“After researching the subject extensively and reading about what an Apprenticeship could offer me I realised that IT was the perfect sector for me,” says Hayley.


Future leaders

IBM has found Apprenticeships to be a valuable recruitment solution for the company, allowing it to engage with a new talent pool and invest in future leaders.   Since being offered an Apprenticeship Hayley has enjoyed a wide range of technical training and begun a variety of online internal training courses, which she has found very useful in moving between job roles and gaining knowledge and experience.

“My favourite course was a week long professional course where I worked alongside employees from the graduate scheme to produce ‘client’ deliverables,” Hayley explains. “The training has allowed me to improve upon my client skills as well as develop my understanding of different projects.”

Hayley’s current role is working as a release manager for one of the IBM’s largest accounts. Her job involves ensuring work is produced for the client on time and to the highest quality - a vital role which means Hayley has daily interactions with the client putting her at the forefront of all solutions.


Learning, security, earning

Hayley would recommend an Apprenticeship to anyone keen to earn while they learn, enjoy job security and carry on learning whilst being supported. “I truly feel that being an apprentice has given me the career I could never have hoped for if I had taken another path. It has allowed me to develop as a person as well as a colleague, showing me the business world in a new light.”

Hayley’s goal is to work in the field of cutting edge technology and she is currently working towards a more managerial role within IBM.

To find out more about Apprenticeship opportunities, please contact the National Apprenticeship Service on 08000 150 600 or visit the website