TheBigChoice uses cookies to enhance your experience. By continuing you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn more >>


About IBM

Company HQ location: Portsmouth, Hampshire

Other locations: Manchester, Greater Manchester; Preston, Lancashire; Winchester, Hampshire; East Bedfont, London; Warwick, Warwickshire; City of London, London

Industry: Information Technology

No of employees: 380000

Our company in a nutshell

At IBM, work is more than a job - it's a calling: To build. To design. To code. To consult. To think along with clients and sell. To make markets. To invent. To collaborate. Not just to do something better, but to attempt things you've never thought possible. To lead in this new era of technology and solve some of the world's most challenging problems.

The world is at a major turning point: technology is enabling entirely new forms of business operations, business models, industries and outcomes. We have exponentially more power to reach the full potential of our life's work than any humans before us. This is our vision for the future.

Apprenticeships at IBM are all about picking up skills for the workplace and embarking on a long and successful career. We have your professional development in mind from the day you join us as a permanent employee. Our apprenticeships range from Level 3 to Level 6 and each pathway gives you everything you need to start your career in the industry! You will get lots of exposure and an experience you simply can't get anywhere else. In addition to the day job there are plenty of opportunities to get involved in social activities and volunteering with other Apprentices, Students and Graduates.

Opportunities are located across England and salaries start at £20,000/annum.

Life at IBM for apprentices

Begin your journey at IBM with skills, not degrees!

Whether you have decided to go straight into work, take a gap year before University, or are exploring your options post-education, our IBM School Leaver programmes will enable you to secure the experience, skills and contacts you need to start building a bright future. If you possess the right skills, there's a career for you at IBM. From predicting the weather to artificial intelligence in Healthcare. Our School Leaver Schemes offer a world of opportunities. You will work on real projects, with real clients and real bottom-line deliverables. IBMers have the support of over 380,000 colleagues worldwide and work for leaders who reward diverse thinking and bold ideas.

Our opportunities for School Leavers will offer you everything you need to build a successful career.

Company Values

Innovation that matters, for our company and for the world

Dedication to every client's success

Trust and personal responsibility in all relationships


Starting salary of £20,000

Get your own laptop on your first day

IBM Rewards

High street shopping discounts

Early Professional Manager to help with your development

Opportunities for travel

Case studies

Jack Bark

Integration Technical Lead

Tell us a bit about yourself…

I joined IBM at the age of 18 after completing my A-levels in Computing, Music Technology and Economics at Ashby School in Leicestershire. While doing my year 13 exams I was offered a place on the IBM apprenticeship scheme (I actually received the offer on my birthday!). I've always had an interest in technology and IT so being able to work for one of the largest IT companies in the world was surreal, especially at the age of 18. Fast forward 3 and a half years, I'm now 22 studying towards a degree and leading a team of 8 people to deliver an IT transformation project on a high-profile public sector account.

Why did you choose to do an apprenticeship?

I chose an apprenticeship because I have always been driven by money and workplace experiences. An apprenticeship meant I could work on real-life deliverables for real-life clients and make a difference in the technology industry, while at the same time learning off the job in the classroom too. Apprenticeships are valuable as you can get real-life work experience while gaining a qualification at the same time and in today's world, employers are looking more closely at the experiences you have rather than the qualifications.

Did you always know you wanted to do an apprenticeship?

For me, I always wanted to do an apprenticeship as I knew university wasn't for me. I've always wanted to get stuck in and get my hands dirty when it came to doing things, from a young age I have always helped my parents out in the garden; building things, taking things apart and trying to learn how to put things back together (although 50% of the time I couldn't put them back together!).

What do you do on a day-to-day basis?

My day to day role consists of understanding the IBM product and figuring out how to align with the client requirements. I ensure that a common platform implementation is used across multiple service's and that testing is complete, vital to ongoing business success. I am currently working directly with the client and providers to deliver the remaining interfaces in time to meet a challenging go live date.

What's the best thing about your job?

The best thing about my job is the amount of opportunity on offer and how often you can get involved in other areas you may not have initially thought about getting involved in. An example of this is when I lead a "Hack-A-Thon" for a project I was working on, it was a bit of fun, we ordered pizzas and all got stuck in with a bit of development, testing and project management - Something I'd never really thought of doing or getting involved in.

Do you have any tips for any students considering an apprenticeship?

One tip for anyone out there considering an apprenticeship is to just go for it, you've got nothing to lose and they're a great opportunity for anybody to learn and gain real life experiences and you'll have so much fun while doing it. Be clear and concise in your application process, if you get to the point in the first sentence people will want to continue reading your application and more than likely ask you to come in for an interview! Quality NOT Quantity!



IBM works broadly on Nanotechnology in a wide range of areas, I find it incredibly interesting as we move into the future, consumers are wanting smaller and smaller tech to make life easier and nanotechnology is helping this.


One thing I find interesting, is just how much we all come in to contact with something IBM has done on a daily basis, without necessarily knowing. For example, if you use your debit card to buy lunch, the chances are there is an IBM Product or Service involved in that transaction somewhere (in most cases at least). It's this behind the scenes contribution that I've found interesting since joining IBM, as it prompts you to consider things you've never thought about before and you suddenly start realising just how much IBM do!


IBM has a huge 'women in tech' community, which supports and celebrates the achievements of women who have pursued a career in technology. The community hosts many events throughout the year to encourage networking and career development for all women across IBM. This is one small part of what makes IBM such an inclusive place to work.


Internally there are a lot of interesting people you wouldn't meet outside of the company, who do amazing things. We have master inventors who come up with ideas and quite literally invent things (obvious I know), that you wouldn't see outside of IBM and I feel should be shown off a lot more than it is. There are a lot of people doing a lot of great work in this company and a lot of the time, it's hidden behind the veil of business to the general public.


Most people that look into IBM know about WATSON; an AI that is IBM's flagship product. However, people are surprised by how many different ways IBM have implemented Watson. A personal favourite is Chef Watson. Chef Watson analyses current recipes and uses this info to intelligently suggest new recipes and flavour combinations that will go well. As most of us are food lovers I am looking forward to what happens next!


IBM is collaborating with car makers BMW to explore the use of Watson, IBM's Artificial Intelligence technology in future BMW vehicles. The aim of this partnership is to work together to see how to improve and embed artificial intelligence in cars of tomorrow to make the overall driver experience better. Prototypes are being worked on right now in Germany and include things like:

*Drivers beginning to ask questions to the vehicle in natural language while they are driving, enabling them to safely focus on the road while they interact with the vehicle
*Incorporating real-time weather and traffic data to make route recommendations to the driver as he/she is driving
*Learning about the driver's preferences, needs and driving habits and the car adapts to these things as they change over time
*IBM & BMW Video

Important dates

IBM's apprenticeship schemes typically close at the end of June for that year's intake.