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How my apprenticeship unveiled the stats behind the songs in the music industry

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PPL is one of the UK’s largest music licensing companies, and their apprentice Tiya has recently completed her Level 3 Data Technician apprenticeship

Tiya tells us about her first steps into a behind-the-scenes role that keeps the music industry ticking

I completed my Level 3 Data Technician apprenticeship in the distribution team at PPL last year. It’s a music licensing organisation based in London which ensures performers and recording rights holders (like record labels) are paid when their music is played on radio, TV and in public places.

Its members include Central Cee, Anderson .Paak, Rita Ora and ABBA’s Björn Ulvaeus, alongside orchestras, backing vocalists and other performers.  

Tell us about the apprenticeship

I found out about the PPL apprenticeship via the QA programme and was paired with a Digital Learning Consultant (DLC) who helped me throughout the journey.

My role involved collecting and organising data and troubleshooting data-related issues. I had opportunities to contribute to projects that ranged from enhancing data security measures to optimising data storage and retrieval processes. I also supported the implementation of new technologies to streamline data management. 

The support I received was brilliant and I managed to reach the end assessment stage ahead of schedule.

What did you study?

A range of modules covering essential skills and knowledge.

  1. Data Collection and Analysis: Delving into the intricacies of data acquisition, cleansing, analysis and the skills to decipher complex data.
  2. Database Management: Understanding database design, SQL and data integrity, ensuring that we could manage data repositories effectively.
  3. Programming and Scripting: Learning programming languages such as Python and mastering scripting techniques opened up exciting possibilities for automation and data manipulation.
  4. Cybersecurity and Data Privacy: With the growing importance of data security, this module emphasised cybersecurity best practices and compliance with data protection regulations.
  5. Communication and Collaboration: This module honed our abilities to collaborate seamlessly and present data-driven insights effectively.

I studied online with virtual classroom sessions to help me acquire the foundational knowledge of the role. These sessions ensured that theoretical concepts seamlessly translated into practical skills.

What key skills did you develop?

I improved my ability to analyse complex datasets and derive meaningful insights as well as gaining proficiency in managing and maintaining databases, ensuring data integrity and accessibility.

Dealing with genuine data challenges improved my problem-solving skills while collaborating with different teams and stakeholders improved my ability to convey concepts to non-technical audiences. 

Portrait of Tiya, a young apprentice at PPL

Data technician Tiya recently completed an apprenticeship with PPL

What were the highlights?

Most rewarding was the hands-on experience and applying theoretical knowledge to real-world scenarios. Working on PPL projects showed the direct impact of data technology on the company’s operations and success. 

The supportive environment and mentorship provided by experienced professionals contributed significantly to my experience, too.

Any advice for those considering an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship is a unique opportunity to combine theoretical knowledge with practical experience. Embrace every learning opportunity that comes your way. 

Try to take initiative in your role, ask questions, seek additional responsibilities and demonstrate your enthusiasm and commitment. 

The tech industry is constantly evolving so stay curious and keep abreast of industry trends and emerging technologies. 

Network with colleagues, mentors, and other apprentices when you can. Building strong professional relationships can open doors to future opportunities.

Final thoughts?

My apprenticeship at PPL, spanning a year of immersive learning, has been a transformative experience. I look forward to exploring new opportunities and contributing to the overall landscape of data management.

Whether it’s pursuing further education, taking on more challenging projects, or advancing within PPL, I am excited about the possibilities that lie ahead.

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