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Feb 2023

NAW2023 – Shannon Smith

Shannon joined the Waterstons team in September 2020 as Service Delivery Manager with two apprenticeships under her belt.


Senior Technology Consultant

She had achieved her Level 3 ICT Systems & Principals for advance apprentices, and Level 3 Diploma ICT Professional, in 2010 after completing her GCSEs.


  • What made you want to study an apprenticeship over another type of course?

I was desperate to start earning my own money while doing something I enjoyed, and that’s exactly what an apprenticeship offers.

  • What attracted you to the courses you studied?

I passed my ICT GCSE a year early as I loved it so much – and was good at it. I knew I wanted to make a career out of IT so looked at ways I could do that while continuing to learn.

  • What is the most important thing you’ve learned from your apprenticeship?

We learn from mistakes. Everyone will make them and sometimes the best way to learn is by making massive mistakes – because you never make the same ones again!

Skills & knowledge are transferable. Nearly 15 years into my career, I have worked in IT support, project management, innovation and now IT management, across several sectors such as security services, telecom services, energy, defence and construction. The apprenticeship gives you the skills to put into practice as your career develops.

  • What has your apprenticeship enabled you to do that you otherwise might not have been able to?

Gain exposure and knowledge; I left school and went straight into a working environment. I know the best way I learn is hands on, getting into the thick of it and making mistakes.

  • What are your future career plans?

Who knows?! Before I came to Waterstons, I had moved out of IT and worked in innovation – if I was told then that I’d be back in IT within three years I would have laughed and said no! Life throws curveballs all the time, enjoy the opportunities that come your way.

  • How does Waterstons support employee learning in general?

If you want to know something or learn something – if you ask anyone, they will help you. We work with great people.

  • What would you say to anyone looking at studying an apprenticeship?

Do it! IT is one of the broadest Industries, from support to data to programming - you have the chance to learn some really interesting things and meet the most interesting people along the way.

Find out more about Shannon here, or check out the careers page for information on opportunities we have available.