Katie Ridge – Portfolio Assurance Manager
I lead the Centre of Excellence Team within the Programme Management Office (PMO), we are the central hub for project management at North West Ambulance Service (NWAS), ensuring best practice by providing project management frameworks, standards and guidance and undertaking a range of assurance activities.
Several of my staff members have completed or are currently undertaking apprenticeships ranging from L3 Business Administration to L4 Project Data Analyst. These apprenticeships have provided an array of benefits for both the staff members undertaking and the organisation itself. For staff members that were new to the team, I have watched them grow in confidence as their apprenticeship gave them opportunities to ask questions they may not have asked and learn about areas of the organisation they may not have ventured into had they not been on the course.
The project element of the course has allowed them more autonomy in their work, providing them with a structured opportunity to make decisions and communicate with the wider team in order to bring about positive improvements. For the longstanding staff members, the apprenticeship has allowed them to continue their professional development, enhancing their bespoke skills to help shape their future career, and in turn provide huge positive advancements to the PMO direction of travel as they continually put their learning into practice.
The apprentices have also shown great resilience in undertaking their programmes alongside their day jobs, planning and organising their workloads to ensure deadlines are met, whilst being support by their tutor and line manager. I am immensely proud of the work all staff have implemented whilst undertaking their apprenticeship programmes and it has been a pleasure watching these individuals grow and thrive as they have been on this journey.