Name: Ray Creasey
Qualification: Advanced Apprenticeship in Light Vehicle Maintenance and Repair
Ray Creasey and his Assessor Graham Price - Motor Vehicles Apprenticeship

Ray successfully achieved his Level 3 VCQ and VRQ in Light Vehicle Maintenance and Repairs at Team Hard Racing earlier this year after progressing on from his previous apprenticeship at Level 2 in VCQ and VRQ in Light Vehicle Repairs. We caught up with Ray to see how his Apprenticeship is helping him since he achieved and he is doing very well!

Courtesy of Ray’s hard work throughout his time on his apprenticeship; he has continued his employment with Team Hard and has been promoted to management, and now oversees the Workshop and encourages and supports other apprentices within the company.

Ray’s story;

“When I left school, I went to college to do Carpentry and became fully qualified, but I didn’t enjoy it and wanted to try something new, and have always had an interest in cars. I have always been aware of apprenticeships and when I joined Team Hard myself and my boss looked together, and as IPS was local to us it went from there and I completed my Level 2. After finishing, I left Team Hard but then came back and did my Level 3 again with IPS, as we chose them due to the support I received on my Level 2. At level 2 you are not deemed fully qualified and I wanted to be fully trained so Level 3 was always something I wanted to do. Mechanics is a big field to learn in and I believe you never stop learning, I still learn every day.

Throughout my apprenticeship, I enjoyed seeing myself progress, you might start off with basic tasks but then quickly progress to other in depth tasks, and I enjoyed that progression, and now I’m at the point where I oversee the workshop and spend my focus on gearboxes, engineering and rebuilding.”

Since completing Level 2 and 3 Ray has now become the workshop manager at the Garage and believes that doing his apprenticeship now helps him relate to their other apprentices they have at Team Hard.

“The person who supported me as my mentor at Team Hard, was a manager who left over a year ago, so I stepped into the managerial role that he left of which happened quite naturally. I feel like I have worked hard to progress and I enjoy my managerial responsibilities, I still work on the cars every day, but I now have more responsibility with deadlines.

We have gone on to take more apprentices, and I feel I have a good relationship with them and can relate to their training as I always know where they are with progression of their apprenticeships and know what they are expected to do. I think it helps them as well as they can see my progression and what can be achieved. I can relate to them and they can relate to me due to being in their shoes and respecting them. I try to pass on the knowledge I have, for example, when working on gearboxes and engines which they haven’t experienced yet, I get them to watch and get involved with my supervision.

I feel I have become like a mentor to the apprentices as they know they can come to me with issues even if they are not work related and after knowing of safeguarding through visits with IPS we can help with any matters that arise. It’s about progressing them, not just in their role but within their life too and giving life lessons. Within this role and when we are at the Races, a lot of communication is needed, and we try to help them find their voice to a degree. “

Ray believes apprenticeships do not just benefit you but also the company too.

“Both of my apprenticeships have helped me positively. When I completed carpentry at college, I left and it felt like there was a big world out there and I was almost intimidated in some ways to go to a building site and not have that experience of being on site.

Whereas when I did my apprenticeships, I was already in a working environment with only the need to attend in house training just one day a week on my level 2 and then less frequently on my level 3. The way this was done giving me onsite experience helped so much, and you can’t learn that being just in a classroom environment or college. I feel that apprentices benefit a company as their work place is usually the first place that they have ever worked which means that they haven’t learned bad traits and that you can mould them to the employer that you want them to be.”

We can see the apprenticeship has helped Ray as he has progressed to a managerial position at team hard, but Ray would still like to progress and talks about how his IPS trainer has spoken to him about his future and guided him about further education.

“My apprenticeship has really helped me. It helped to have trainers that were on hand for any problems, Rob was my trainer for my level 2 and then Graham (Pictured)  for my 3 and they were very supportive and helped me get through and were always there when I needed anything. I think it shows here at Team Hard that we like apprenticeships and IPS as we have put through a lot more apprentices since I have achieved mine and would recommend IPS. I have a good rapport with my trainer Graham, and he didn’t just help but got involved when he visited the workplace to give training visiting regular of which made me feel relaxed and at ease. On occasions, I would need a job urgently signed off that doesn’t come up that frequently for observation purposes on my qualification, so would contact Graham who would on most occasions, stop what he was doing and visit me to sign off the observation, so I didn’t fall behind or miss opportunities to progress.”

“Graham has mentioned to me about a Level 4 apprenticeship which is more managerial, and it’s something I’m interested in to further myself more. I like learning new things and obviously wanted to become an expert but also have the expertise in a field to some degree that I have now. Here at Team Hard, we run Volkswagens, and I’m in charge of these vehicles but we are looking to get different makes and models, and I’m looking forward to learning about these and becoming a Master Technician on these as well.”

“I honestly couldn’t recommend apprenticeships enough, the experience you gain either on site or in the job role, you cannot learn through a textbook or a classroom. In a workshop environment, you have multitude of people all willing to share their knowledge with you.”

IPS would like to congratulate Ray; after completing his Level 3 Apprenticeship, Ray has been working in full-time employment and has progressed to managing the workshop. We wish him every success in the future and hope he considers his Master Technicians qualification with us. All the best Ray!

If you would like to find out more about IPS's apprenticeships in Motor Vehicle, please call 01634 298808