Rising star Nathan has bright future ahead through McDonald’s apprenticeship

Nathan O’Hara (25), Second Assistant Manager at the McDonald’s restaurant in Newry, has said that apprenticeship opportunities facilitated by the business has led to his rapid career progression.

Nathan, who first worked for McDonald’s as a teenager before leaving briefly for another industry, re-joined its then newest restaurant McKinstry Road in Belfast in 2021. Since re-joining the business, only three years ago, Nathan has speedily progressed through the ranks from Crew Member, Crew Trainer and Shift Manager to his current role of Second Assistant Manager in the Newry restaurant.

The apprenticeship scheme, which is being facilitated by training provider Inspiro, has been tailored to Nathan specifically and has provided him with a combination of essential skills training in Maths, English and ICT, as well as more practical, hands-on experience in the restaurant.

The Level 3  Hospitality Supervision and Leadership apprenticeship also covers vital coaching on health and safety, food safety and digital food safety, as well as updates in the wider retail industry and off-floor performance appraisals. Furthermore, it delves into setting and delivering on business objectives, how to effectively lead a team and improving customer service skills.

Having already had experience of another industry, Nathan said that he craved a job that would provide strong opportunities for future career development and that McDonald’s has been a perfect fit for him.

“I really enjoy the flexibility and the opportunities for progression that McDonald’s provides its employees,” he said.

“The apprenticeship programme is a brilliant way of mapping out your career ambitions and what you can achieve with the right support network, and it is a real bonus to be able to earn while you learn.

“My confidence has grown massively from the promotions and increased responsibility that I have gained at McDonald’s, and I hope to continue climbing up the career ladder with the business long into the future.”

Geraldine Moore, Group People Manager at McDonald’s JMC Restaurants, commented: “We are passionate about developing our people, and through our apprenticeships, we provide a platform for staff to launch their careers, acquire a strong skillset and aim for long-term success in the business.

“McDonald’s apprenticeships benefit our employees by providing valuable hands-on training, skill development and career advancement opportunities. They offer a structured pathway for personal and professional growth, empowering people to acquire industry-specific skills and leadership qualities.”

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 Nathan’s career progression and we wish him all the best for his future with McDonald’s.”

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