Future is golden for local woman and McDonald’s apprentice Sarah

Sarah O’Neill (22), Training Manager at the McDonald’s restaurant in Ballygomartin, has said that apprenticeship opportunities facilitated by the business has led to her rapid career progression.

Sarah has worked for McDonald’s at its Boucher Road and Ballygomartin restaurants for six years, and in that time has progressed speedily through the ranks from Crew Member and Crew Trainer to her current role of Training Manager.

Having already successfully completed a Level 2 apprenticeship programme, she embarked on her Level 3 training mid-way through 2023, with the new training being tailored to her current managerial role.

The apprenticeship scheme, which is being facilitated by local training provider Inspiro, covers vital training on health and safety, food safety and digital food safety, updates in key legislation, as well as appraisals and observations of Sarah’s managerial performance during shifts. Furthermore, it delves into setting and delivering on business objectives, how to effectively lead a team and improving customer service skills.

Sarah said the apprenticeship training had given her a solid understanding of the roles she has worked in as well as the confidence and necessary skillset to progress further.

“When I completed the Level 2 training as a Crew Member, it was so beneficial for the stage I was at during the beginning of my career because it provided me with an all-round knowledge of McDonald’s as a business but also the wider retail industry,” she added.

“Now that I am working in a managerial role, I had the opportunity to embark on Level 3 training, and it feels like a bespoke learning and development tool for me and has really improved how I work and operate in my job.

“The apprenticeship schemes map out clear career progression opportunities, and they have given me huge confidence to do my job effectively and strive towards future promotions within the business.

“McDonald’s is like my second family and looking ahead to the future, I hope to continue my ongoing career development journey here.”

Ciara McGuire, People Manager at McDonald’s Ballygomartin, commented: “Our business benefits hugely from having apprenticeships in a number of ways. They offer a structured pathway for our employees to develop essential skills and knowledge specific to our business’ operations. Furthermore, they help develop a future talent pool and foster employee loyalty and retention by investment in their development.”

National Apprenticeship Week takes place between 5 to 11 February 2024 and provides an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of apprentices and the positive impact they make to businesses and the wider economy.

Since 2006, McDonald’s has supported over 20,000 people from across the UK and Ireland with an apprenticeship opportunity. Following a review in 2023, 100% of apprenticeship achievers at McDonald’s said that the programme helped them progress in their career, 98% said the training helped them perform better at work and 86% said they were more productive at work.

Catherine Stevenson, Sales and Account Development Manager at Inspiro, said: “It’s wonderful to see the positive impact apprenticeships can have on individuals, businesses and the wider economy. At Inspiro, we’re proud to work with McDonald’s to deliver high-quality apprenticeship programmes that help develop essential skills and knowledge specific to the business’ operations. It’s great to see Sarah’s career progression and we wish her all the best for her future with McDonald’s.”

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