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Apprenticeships at Frettens - My experience

View profile for Cameron Hearn
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After recently completing his Apprenticeship at Frettens and starting in a full-time position, Content Marketing & Social Media Assistant Cameron Hearn answers some questions on apprenticeships…

What are apprenticeships like at Frettens?

My experience as an apprentice at Frettens has been fantastic. The support has been immense, and I’ve felt part of the team from day one.

As well as being surrounded by welcoming colleagues, I’ve also gained valuable experience at Frettens.

In my first month alone, I was brought up to speed with the then upcoming website rebuild; and ‘shown the ropes’ of various marketing channels.

Every part of my role had some value to the business. It wasn’t as if I was completing menial tasks such as making cups of tea and coffee all day long! I felt, and continue to feel, valued.

Additional support

For me, the team at Frettens have gone above and beyond in terms of support.

I was encouraged by my colleagues to submit an application for the Dorset Chamber Apprentice of the Year Awards. Even suggesting I apply for the award made me feel appreciated by the team.

I was lucky enough to win Advanced Apprentice of the Year at the awards, and my colleagues were there by my side at the ceremony. It felt fantastic to be recognised, both by the Chamber and the team at Frettens.


Frettens are so flexible when it comes to work hours. From the beginning, I was offered many different start times (8am, 8:30am, 9am etc.) and was able to choose which one suited me best.

Furthermore, there have been many occasions where I’ve been able to start and finish early when I’ve needed to – most commonly to get away early for football matches (being a season ticket holder at Saints)!

What experience have you gained?

At Frettens, I’ve learnt a wide range of digital marketing skills and have gained experience in implementing campaigns across multiple channels and platforms.

The apprenticeship has given me practice in many areas of digital marketing, and I have become most proficient in content, social media and email marketing; which my new role and job title reflects.

I’ve also developed my soft skills, improving on my communication both in and out of an office environment.

What was the course like?

The course that I took was a Digital Marketing Level 3 at Bournemouth and Poole College, which was amazing.

Throughout the course, I learnt the ins and outs of key marketing techniques and practices; which I have since applied within my position at Frettens.

As well as learning the fundamentals of digital marketing, I also completed my CIM which gave me a good understanding of lead generation tactics; and my Synoptic Project where I applied my acquired skills into a marketing report.

Aside from the study side of things, I met a bunch of new people at the college in varying industries. This meant I could build friendships and achieve a greater understanding of how other companies employ marketing into their business models.

What is the work-study balance like?

During the 18 months, I worked 4-day weeks at Frettens, attending college once per week (on Tuedays).

This was a perfect balance, as I was given enough time in a week to continue learning my job role and meet my individual targets; whilst continuing to study.

I never felt overwhelmed with work or college, and never needed to sacrifice one for the other.

What has the transition from apprentice to full-time employee been like?

The transition has been smooth.

During my apprenticeship, it was made clear to me well in advance that there would be a position for me at Frettens after my 18 months ended.

The fact that there was no uncertainty regarding my future was brilliant. I knew that I wouldn’t be hunting for a job during the latter months of my apprenticeship!

What has the support been like after your apprenticeship?

Since starting full-time, my colleagues have continued to be supportive. It’s great to have such encouraging people around me, especially in the early stages of my career.

Are apprenticeships a good option?

In my opinion, apprenticeships are a terrific option. Not only do you learn and develop your skills at college, but you’re also able to put your knowledge into practice at work.

You get a qualification, actual on-the-job experience and a salary!

Lewis Barr, Marketing & Commercial Director at Frettens, said: “I have always been a huge advocate for apprenticeships and see them as a brilliant way to grow a team.

I don’t think it’s an over-statement to say that Cameron has learned as much in 18 months with us as he would have on a three-year degree course in marketing.

He has gained a huge amount of genuine practical experience and hasn’t amassed tens of thousands of pounds of debt, all while earning a salary and developing those all-important soft skills that we value so highly.”

Anything else?

Frettens have exceptional support systems in place, for which I am very appreciative, and are an excellent place to work.

I’m currently awaiting my results, but I’m sure that everything I’ve learned in my time at Frettens will assist me in achieving a good grade!

Apply for a digital Marketing Apprenticeship

After Cameron’s successful integration into the team, we are now looking to bring on another digital marketing apprentice to help us build on our success and recent rapid growth.

As an apprentice, you’ll gain practice experience, make valuable contributions and learn multiple digital disciplines.

For more details and application information, click here.

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