Young Retail Apprentice 2018

McCalls is one of Scotland’s leading Highlandwear specialists with a strong focus on customer service and affordability which has been developed over the last 130 years. The newest addition to the McCalls family is the Dundee branch which opened in May 2017 with a new team which included Kira Fraser who had worked in the Broughty Ferry store for almost two years.  Kira had previously completed a week of work experience with McCalls while still at school which was so successful that she was offered a part time job following this.  She moved to the Dundee store as there was a full-time position available and with her already having experience it was a perfect fit.

Kira showed herself to be great in helping to train the new team and being left in charge to cover the manager’s days off. She understands the importance of providing a high standard of customer service and good quality products.  The main thing that needed work was Kira’s confidence and realising that, although she was only 19 years old, she was great at her job and knew what she was doing.  An opportunity arose for Kira to complete an SVQ in retail while working and as she was keen to develop her skills and experience she signed up with Learn Direct.  During the initial process of signing up for this it was advised that Kira go straight for the level three qualification, Retail Management.

Throughout the course she worked very hard making sure that everything she needed was completed on time and to a high standard. She has a brilliant quality for a young person, or anyone really, of actively looking for things she didn’t know and finding out the information she needed before she needed it.  This meant that she was prepared when the situation came up.  She asked for help or advice when she needed to and also used her own initiative to look at processes in the shop and see if there was any way they could be made simpler or work slightly more efficiently.  She made helpful guides for the other team members to use and increased her own knowledge greatly.

The whole process developed her confidence, so much so that in December she was promoted to Branch Supervisor, and the youngest supervisor with the company. She has also just received the award for Young Retail Apprentice 2018.  This is a wonderful achievement and emphasises the point that being a young age does not put you at a disadvantage.  If you work hard and put in the effort then it will pay off.  She completed her qualification while working in her normal role making it easy for any young person to do it.  It’s a great addition to her CV and it’s given her the boost to know that she can do anything she puts her mind to.

Fiona Hain, Dundee Branch Manager, would recommend the apprenticeship scheme to any employer or young person, “It has been so good to see how far Kira has come and to see her doing so well.   Her effort and enthusiasm has also inspired me to work with Developing the Young Workforce helping other young people, in schools, to prepare to find employment after leaving education through working on CV skills and mock interviews.”