AF Blakemore recruit completes company’s new Warehouse & Distribution apprenticeship programme


A go-getting young recruit at AF Blakemore & Son has celebrated becoming the first person to complete the company’s new Warehouse & Distribution apprenticeship programme.

Jen Davies completed the Supply Chain Warehouse Operative apprenticeship at the company’s logistics division on 11 July.

After spending a year gaining core warehouse skills, including assembling, loading and fork-lift truck driving at the company’s head office in Willenhall, Jen successfully passed the end point assessment first time.

Davies is AF Blakemore’s first apprentice to successfully complete the new Supply Chain Warehouse Operative programme since the company re-launched its apprenticeship programme in partnership with Performance Through People last year.

Describing herself as shy and lacking confidence when she first started, Jen explained how things have changed: “Working in the ambient warehouse at A.F. Blakemore has really brought me out of my shell. I’m now more confident and I won’t shy away when given new responsibilities.

“During my apprenticeship I’ve had a lot of support and motivation from all members of the team, and been given opportunities to work in different sections of the warehouse, from assembling orders in security to taking on administrative responsibilities in the despatch office.

“It’s also been great to work with other apprentices that have come into the business and pass on my knowledge of the warehouse and support them when they need it.

“I am so happy to have passed my assessment and also relieved. I would like to thank the company for giving me this opportunity and, most importantly, for offering me a permanent role within the logistics division.”

Ambient warehouse operations manager Adam Ball, who oversees the apprentices based at the ambient warehouse, said: “When Jen joined us she was very shy and quiet, but she has developed into a strong-willed and skilled operative, competent in assembly, reach truck driving, loading and despatch. She is now a key part of our team.

“Apprentices will form a major part of our recruitment strategy moving towards 2020, as the business continues to search out hardworking and talented individuals.”

PTP managing director Rob Colbourne commented: “It is fantastic news that Jen, one of our apprentices, has successfully completed her end point assessment.

“All achievements are important to PTP and our clients, however, this has particular significance as Jen is one of our first apprentices to pass since the apprenticeship reforms were introduced, and the new standards were part of the process.

“Feedback from the external assessor was very positive. She said it was the most impressive assessment she had been involved in, due to the way it had been organised and the environment that had been created for the test.

“This confirms the fantastic working relationship we have with A.F. Blakemore and their commitment to getting it right for their apprentices.”

Now that she has completed the 12-month programme, Jen, who is a fully-fledged Warehouse Operative, will have the opportunity to succeed into a supervisory, managerial or driving role within Blakemore Logistics.

AF Blakemore is still recruiting Warehouse & Distribution apprentices at its head office in Willenhall. 

There is also a range of other apprenticeship programmes available at the company, including schemes in transport, admin and IT.