What are the benefits of doing an optical retail apprenticeship?

Author: Staci Hearnshaw
Author: Staci Hearnshaw
Posting date: 04/04/2022

An optical apprenticeship allows you to develop the essential skills and experience needed to launch your career in optometry. It serves as an alternative entry point into your chosen industry and a change from a classroom environment. Apprenticeships are a great option for those who feel ready to enter the workforce and start building their careers through practical training, and supportive study. If you’re considering taking one of our optical retail apprenticeships here at Vision Express, we discuss the key benefits below.

Earn while you learn

One of the biggest benefits of choosing an optical retail apprenticeship is that it allows you to earn a salary for the work you do while working towards a qualification. Therefore, you’ll be able to expand your knowledge and potentially progress your faster career at an earlier stage, helping you become more employable in the future within Vision Express. An apprenticeship offers you lots of responsibility and can help you build confidence, professionalism and competence – and at Vision Express, we’re proud to pay our apprentices above the minimum wage.

Gain relevant experience

When you undertake an optical retail apprenticeship, you will gain invaluable experience that could set you apart from other professionals when applying for roles in the future. While academic qualifications and achievements are still important, apprentices will have a stronger understanding of the wider industry because of having real-life exposure in an optical environment, as well as their chosen career path. Therefore, undertaking an apprenticeship could put you at an advantage. Not only does an apprenticeship give you tangible experience within a store, but you’ll be gaining qualifications that will make you eligible for different Optom roles, whether that’s as a Trainee Optical Assistant or Pre Registration Optometrist.

Build a professional network

As an Optical Retail Apprentice, you’ll be able to meet a variety of different people, which in turn, allows you to build a professional network of trusted advisors and mentors. With the support of a Store Manager, apprentices will be interacting with customers and other staff in a fast-paced environment. Networking is an important part of being an apprentice and it can be a great way to strengthen your career in the long term. Depending on which store you work in, there will be lots of opportunities to meet other apprentices, and exchange ideas with others in the optometry sector. An apprenticeship gives you the chance to start the networking process early, so you’ll have a vast range of contacts in the future.


Improves career prospects

Completing an optical apprenticeship shows that you’re able to handle the demands of the workforce whilst studying towards a qualification. During your apprenticeship, you’ll also receive one-to-one support and professional development, where you’ll be able to ask questions and raise any concerns. A successful optician retail apprenticeship programme will certainly improve your career prospects, as you’ll have a better understanding of Optometry, as well as improved communication and time management skills, both of which are essential in an Optom role.


Are you looking to become an optical apprentice?

There’s no doubt that doing an optician retail apprenticeship is a great way to work towards a permanent position in one of our stores. Over half of our apprentices have progressed to professional and in-store career paths, and one-hundred per cent of our apprentices receive a distinction pass rate. At Vision Express, we’re focused on helping our colleagues succeed and meet their goals. Apply to one of our apprenticeship vacancies today with your CV and keep reading our blog for more interesting content.