When AI Global Media, a multi-platform digital publishing house, decided it was time to expand their evolving I.T. department to support the various projects undertaken to improve internal process and customer service, they decided to use the Government’s ‘Plan for Jobs’ Kickstart Scheme which offers six-month jobs for young people, aged 16 to 24, currently claiming Universal Credit and at risk for long-term unemployment.
After all, from the outset, AI Global Media has endeavoured to support the local community. From annual philanthropic pursuits to community outreach, it treasures its ability to positively impact the region it operates in, and the people in it. With all this in mind, utilising the Kickstart Scheme seemed the obvious choice.
Now, with two months having passed since AI Global Media hired their first I.T. Trainee from the scheme, Ryan Brogden reflects on his start in the business. “It’s been great. I’ve felt welcomed since I started and look forward to coming into the office each day. I was a bit familiar with the business as I’d heard the name before but didn’t have much information about it, so I was very intrigued when I looked at the website. Right away I could tell how professional the business was. As both my previous jobs were in the fast-food business, where I was a shift manager, this style of job is completely new to me.”
For AI Global Media, culture is paramount. With a diverse team from wildly different backgrounds, it promotes individualisation and agency. All are encouraged to embrace creativity and innovation in how they approach their roles – this, in turn, creates a dynamic and thriving office environment. Ryan, ultimately, agrees: “I can have a laugh whilst being productive with my work which is great for stressful and busy days.”
Equally, the company understands that continued professional development is the crux of modern business, and stagnation can be a death knell to companies. Investment in your best and most vital assets – people – keeps morale high, and your business agile, ready for any challenge. Now at AI Global Media, Ryan has experienced this drive first-hand. “Since I started, I have been constantly learning new things When it comes to email creation and data cleaning, as well as how other parts of the company work and operate. When a team member was on holiday, I had to do the entire week without help for email creation which assisted me in gaining confidence in my abilities and finding my footing within the team. I have also been introduced to other aspects of my role which I will be learning about soon such as networking and our CRM platform. It is nice to see where this journey is taking me.”
Ryan continues, touching on the collaborative nature of the role. “I’m enjoying the email creation part greatly, as it allows me to be creative whilst ensuring I maintain a keen attention to detail. Since I am doing stuff for the other teams in the company, it provides me with the chance to talk to, and get to know, a lot of my colleagues which is great. I’ve also really been enjoying learning the ins-and-outs of my role and how it contributes to the wider company which I find very interesting as this is my first job in a corporate setting.”
Whether Ryan stays or uses his experiences at AI Global Media to propel his career forwards, it is clear that the skills he learns and hones at the company will prove valuable moving forwards.“I’ve always wanted a job within IT and am always looking at courses for python and cyber security I would hope that at some time in my future I would be able to learn either or both. I would love to stay a part of this business. In the long run, I think the model of this business and the type of people who comprise the workforce would make anyone want to stay. I’ve loved every minute I’ve been here and can easily say that I have never been happier in a job. Working doesn’t feel like ‘work’.”In light of the pandemic, the corporate paradigm has shifted – potentially permanently – on its axis. Many are realising that their time is valuable, and work, in turn, must feel rewarding. Useful. Enjoyable. Laying the foundations for a strong office and company-wide culture is a wise investment, for organisations of all sizes. AI Global Media believes that all team members need to feel valued, and that their work, to quote Ryan here, shouldn’t “feel like work”.
In many ways, this may be the best time for business owners and managers to utilise the Kickstart Scheme to reinvigorate their workforce and revaluate how they invest in their team and culture.
But let’s leave the final word to Ryan who, when asked about a fun fact, responded: “I have a huge love for film musicals. They were my guilty pleasure growing up.”