Multi-image tile of headshots of Barclays apprentices.


Celebrating 10 years of apprenticeships

10 February 2021

Over the last decade, the bank’s award-winning apprenticeship scheme has produced more than 4,000 apprentices across five different countries. Barclays leaders and inspirational apprentices share how the programme has helped bring new cohorts of talented people to the industry.

“I’m still only 21, but I’ve achieved so much. I’ve got five years of experience, a great career ahead of me and I’ve just graduated with a first-class honours degree,” says Winnie Bullock. She is one of 4,000 people around the world who has joined Barclays through its apprenticeship programme – which is celebrating its first decade.

The apprenticeship programme is designed to help build a diverse, highly skilled workforce and is open to jobseekers from all backgrounds – including ex-military, returning parents, school leavers, those over 50 and people with seen and unseen disabilities.

Bullock took on a role in the Cryptography team – but the bank offers training across the organisation with two entry paths, foundation and higher, to make it open for people with different academic levels.

Natalie Ojevah joined the bank as an apprentice aged 17 and was recently awarded a WeAreTheCity Rising Star award, which showcases the pipeline of female talent in the UK. She now works as a LawTech Ecosystem Manager at Barclays Eagle Labs where she manages a team of three and supports a network of startups. She says: “I’d never really heard about apprenticeship programmes, so I thought ‘right, let’s go for it’. I didn’t think I would be a leader and today I am, so it really shows you the value of apprentices in the business.”

An apprenticeship is a great way to make sure you get your career off to a flying start.

Matt Hammerstein

CEO for Barclays UK

Headshot of Barclays’ Matt Hammerstein.

Matt Hammerstein, CEO for Barclays UK, says Barclays’ apprenticeship scheme can help “get your career off to a flying start”.

Providing opportunities for growth

Since launch, the programme has received industry-wide praise for its work – including being recognised in RateMyApprenticeship’s Top 100 Employers and AllAboutSchoolLeavers’ Top 150 Employers, and winning the School Leaver/Apprenticeship Strategy Award in the ISE Student Recruitment Awards 2018.

Matt Hammerstein, CEO for Barclays UK, says that apprenticeships push organisations to grow and develop: “For the organisation, apprenticeships are a great way to bring people in and challenge the status quo. People with open minds ask searching questions, which force us to sit back and ask ourselves why we do things the way we do and how we can do them better.”

“The world of work is fundamentally different than when I started,” Hammerstein adds, reflecting on his career in the finance industry spanning over two decades. “An apprenticeship is a great way to make sure you get your career off to a flying start, and one at Barclays provides the flexibility, training, development and perspective to set yourself up for the future.”

Launching thousands of careers

In just over 10 years, Barclays has hired over 4,000 apprentices, setting them up for success in the workplace. The bank has supported them to build a toolset for lifelong learning which means they will be able to continue to adapt and grow with the organisation.

Headshot of Barclays Group CEO Jes Staley.

Barclays Group CEO Jes Staley says the apprenticeship scheme “touches people's lives”.

It touches people's lives, but it also brings very talented, very sincere people into Barclays

Jes Staley

Barclays Group CEO

Recognising the programme’s impact so far, Barclays Group CEO Jes Staley says: “It touches people's lives, but it also brings very talented, very sincere people into Barclays to help us build what we hope is one of the most respected banks in the industry.”