Apprenticeship success story: Alina Solomka, Iceland

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"The apprenticeship has helped me get out of my comfort zone and become the best store manager I can be"

Client Engagement officer Max Merritt catches up with Iceland apprentice Alina for a brief Q&A on her Retail Management apprenticeship.

How long have you been working at Iceland? Since October 2017

What apprenticeship are you studying? Level 4 Retail Management

Have you completed any apprenticeships or training courses before? No

What was your education/job outlook prior to starting your course? Degree and Masters, Deputy Manager Role at another food retailer

Why did you choose an apprenticeship route over others? To get a deeper insight into how to run a store and become an outstanding manager

What are you most looking forward to about the apprenticeship/training/completing? New Knowledge skills, new topics and getting to start practising them in my store

Progression: What are your future ambitions? Training? Job/Role? Responsibility? How will it help you get on in work and with your professional development? I wish to get enough experience to start working towards becoming an area manager in 5 years' time. This apprenticeship will allow me to learn correct procedures and follow process and be more confident in my role. 

What do you enjoy most about working at Iceland? I haven't been here long, but the team around me especially my area manager have been really supportive. I also like the fast-paced environment and learning about home deliveries as well as online orders

What's your favourite department/product/project/job? Being in charge of home/online deliveries

What's your work routine like? I do something different every day. I try and learn something new with each task I complete.

Why did you join us? Progression opportunities and wish to be part of the team who makes the Iceland brand stronger.

What's working well? The topics covered discuss wide range of things that are not within my role, who I feel is really good, as it opens your eyes to various things a business has to consider. My area manager allow me the time to do all my topics for Lifetime.

What could be improved? There could be a bit more clarity on the structure of the end point assessment.

Overall comments: I have a good and supportive trainer. Deeper knowledge section is great, giving you opportunity to expand your knowledge. Really like the case studies and articles attached to some of topics, gives you a real life view of things.



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