It's National Apprenticeship Week! CityCare's apprenticeships offer gateways to fulfilling careers in both corporate and clinical pathways. One story that particularly stands out is that of our Head of Business Intelligence, Jack Dykeman. Jack joined CityCare in 2012 in the business team. Ten years on, Jack is now leading the team he joined as an apprentice. Working in various roles across CityCare in that time, Jack said that '’s been an amazing place to work. I’ve always felt incredibly supported, encouraged and allowed to grow and develop. I’ve worked with some amazing people (and still do!) and have a lot of pride in saying who I work for.' Read his full story below!

My Apprenticeship Journey

I started working with CityCare back in July 2012 as an apprentice in the Business Team. I was slightly older than other apprentices (22 at the time), as well as having a full-time job already. Over time though I found I didn’t enjoy the work as much as I once did, there was very little room for progression and as I hadn’t been to University and had no other experience, it was hard to break into another career path. An apprenticeship seemed like the best way to be able to gain the experience and qualifications that I needed and pursue a more fulfilling career. I’d always had an interest in Computers and ICT, but it wasn’t until the interviewer at CityCare said that they think I would be best suited in the data role that I considered it as a career.

After 10 months as an apprentice, a vacancy came up in HR assisting with systems, I managed to secure this role and learned a lot with the team, as well as helping to rollout e-expenses and appraisal systems. One of the main things I gained from working in this role though was interacting directly with staff across the organisation, rather than just leads who worked with data. I was given a lot of freedom in this role as well to advise on changes which helped me build up a lot of confidence.

From HR, I moved into Respiratory within CityCare to support their admin functions. At this point, I’d realised one of the things I was missing was working directly within a clinical service, and although I wasn’t a clinical member of staff, just working in the team and experiencing what the staff did on a day to day basis as well as having patient contact gave me some valuable insight into something I’d not experienced directly. Also having the experience of the systems, I was able to see the challenges that staff had with them on the ground and join up the two pieces of the puzzle.

After this, a vacancy came up back within the Business team but as a full-time analyst. I’d always wanted to do this full time since doing it as an apprentice, so having the opportunity to do it was brilliant. I was successful with this and moved back into the team I’d started in and that gave me a chance in the beginning. Having the time working in different parts of the organisation helped me have an understanding of how everything connected when going into this role.

After around 2 years, there was an opportunity for progression with a role in Small Steps Big Changes coming out. As the project was so different, I was interested and again, would be some valuable experience whilst still being able to remain within CityCare. At the point I joined the team, a lot of the data and systems was in their infancy and I was given a lot of control to create the processes and set up the foundation for systems and reporting. After our team manager left, I applied for the role of Performance, Quality & Evaluation Manager which I was fortunate to get. This was my first real pure management role, which was a tough transition at first and understanding that it would be a change from day to day tasks to something a lot more strategic. Over time though I came to enjoy this and as I was exposed more and more to this in the role, I gained a lot of confidence.

In 2021, a Head of Business Intelligence vacancy came out within the Business team, which would be leading in the team that I started my journey with CityCare in. As soon as I saw the post advertised, I had to apply for it as it was something I was so passionate about, but also amazing that I even had the opportunity to put myself forward for it. I was in a nice position where I enjoyed the job I was doing, had a fantastic team around me, and whatever the outcome of the interview, I was enjoying what I was doing. I was lucky enough to get the job and started in January 2022 back with the team that made it all happen in the first place but a completely different role.

Now, coming up for my tenth year in the organisation, I can say that it’s been an amazing place to work. I’ve always felt incredibly supported, encouraged and allowed to grow and develop. I’ve worked with some amazing people (and still do!) and have a lot of pride in saying who I work for. Moving forward, I’m hoping that in the role I am in now, I can give something back to the people who have given so much to me.

Date published: 10 February 2023