Apprentice says career path was 'best move' as he encourages students

PUBLISHED: 08:31 26 April 2019 | UPDATED: 08:31 26 April 2019

The team at Digiistore, which is part of Identity Creative, a company based in Saffron Walden. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

The team at Digiistore, which is part of Identity Creative, a company based in Saffron Walden. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

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A former Saffron Walden County High School pupil who joined a local business as an apprentice is encouraging other students to consider the career pathway.

Matt Jackson, 22, a web developer at a newly formed company in Saffron Walden called Digiistore, told the Reporter about the new business and how starting as an apprentice was the “best thing” he ever did.

“I always thought I wanted to go to university but as I was finishing my A Levels I realised I didn't want to be in the classroom setting anymore,” Matt said. “I was ready for a change and being in the working world appealed to me. I realised I had spent 14 of my 18 years at school and I started to look at other options. An apprenticeship meant I could work while learning which really appealed to me and what I wanted to do.”

Matt joined Identity Creative, which is based in High Street in Saffron Walden after moving from Chesterford Research Park a few years ago, for a 12-month apprenticeship and has now been with the company for five years.

Digiistore is a company that will operate under the umbrella of Identity Creative.

“We are a young team, we're the next generation of the business, and a few years ago we got together and came up with a new idea,” Matt said. “It came from someone who went to buy a Sims game to give as a gift and was taken aback when he was given a receipt with a code at the bottom for the recipient to use. We realised that gifting of digital products was losing personality due to technology.”

So Matt and his colleagues, one also being a former apprentice, decided to make the gifting of digital products more personal.

The company is aiming to be a one-stop shop for all digital products, whether it's Netflix giftcards, Xbox games or mobile top-ups. “We went live with the website just before Christmas,” Matt said.

Matt especially enjoyed the flexibility of an apprenticeship and sees himself staying with the company for the foreseeable future.

“It was the best decision I made,” he said. “It was scary to think that I had to pick a university course that I would need to stick to for three years and if I didn't like it, it was difficult to change. With an apprenticeship, it's a lot more flexible.”

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