Inspiring Business by Sharing Success

Burton upon Trent apprentice helps Amazon mark major milestone

Burton upon Trent apprentice helps Amazon mark major milestone

An apprentice from Burton-upon-Trent has helped Amazon celebrate the 10th anniversary of its apprenticeship programme and is sharing his story in the hope of inspiring people in Burton-upon-Trent to follow in his footsteps.

Muhammad Hammad Lateef is one of the 5,000 apprentices that have taken part in the Amazon Apprenticeship programme since it launched in 2013.

Muhammad Hammad Lateef lives in Burton-on-Trent and is step-up team leader Associate pool at Amazon in Kegworth. Hammad has completed a supply chain warehouse operative apprenticeship through the Amazon Apprenticeship programme and is passionate about inspiring future engineers.

Hammad graduated from the University of Northumbria in 1995 with a BA (Hons) degree in History of Art, Design and Film, but quickly had to put his plans on hold to support his family during his father’s illness.

Following the passing of his father in 1999, Hammad secured a job in engineering and went on to become a service technician for Altendorf.

“As a specialist technician, I would always complete assigned tasks to the best of my ability,” Hammad said. “I would read up on how to fix a problem or install a system, then apply what I had learned. I was always in ‘go’ mode, focused on solving issues and fixing any customer problems.”

Hammad set up his own engineering business in 2004, and in 2006, with demand for his specialist services on the wane, he trained, qualified, and worked as an electrical inspection, testing and certification engineer. This took him down an unexpected path. In 2012 he joined Derby College and then Warwickshire College to become a lecturer in City & Guilds Electrical Installation (Levels 1-4).

Four years later, Hammad returned to engineering.

“I joined a new company as a service engineer. My primary role was to build machines using the skill sets I had acquired at my first engineering job. As an engineer, I developed the capacity to stop, take a step back, see the bigger picture and think about any issues that may crop up further down the road.”

Wanting a change, Hammad joined Amazon in 2020 where he has worked as a step-up team leader in ICQA while completing his apprenticeship. A big part of Hammad’s life outside of work is his passion for volunteering.

He spends his time volunteering with the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET), Bedford College and the Associate of Apprentices (AoA) as Council Chair. His passion for helping develop the next generation of engineers also sees Hammad act as an ambassador for the Amazon Apprenticeship programme, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2023.

“At AoA, I work with the council and local communities to help offer some of the social elements that are missing from apprenticeship programmes as well as providing professional development opportunities and career advice. I have always been passionate about inspiring people to explore their career options. My work with IET, AoA and the Amazon Apprenticeship programme helps me to point people in the direction of apprenticeships and opportunities that will help set them up in a career path they maybe didn’t even realise was available to them.”

To mark the tenth year of the Amazon Apprenticeship programme, Brit-nominated, South London artist Cat Burns was the headline act at a mentoring event for 200 aspiring apprentices in one of Amazon’s largest fulfilment centres in the UK, marking the tenth anniversary of the company’s apprenticeship programme.

The audience included Amazon employees and apprentices, alongside 200 members of Apprentice Nation, the career development platform, that uses the power of music to inspire 16-25-year olds to shape their future.

In addition to the concert, attendees were given a tour of the centre, which is equipped with advanced Amazon robotics technology, to experience a behind the scenes look at what happens when they click ‘buy’ on the Amazon website and see the technology used to help deliver for millions of customers around the world every day. The Apprentice Nation members also took part in career development activities and a mass mentoring session with Amazon apprentices, employees and industry leaders from Lucozade and Havas, sharing their career stories and advice.

When the Amazon apprenticeship programme launched in 2013, it had one scheme - engineering - and only six apprentices. Five are still employees of the business today and are flourishing as engineers in fulfilment centres in Dunfermline, Rugeley and Swansea. This year, Amazon has offered hundreds of full-time apprenticeship roles across the UK starting at entry-level and including around 250 degree-level apprenticeships in over 30 different schemes ranging from engineering to broadcast production, warehouse team leaders to buying and merchandising. 

In total, since the launch of the Amazon apprenticeship programme in 2013, there have been 5,000 Amazon apprenticeships offered in the UK. The vast majority (85%) of employees who completed their apprenticeships have gone on to build successful careers at Amazon and currently 79% remain working with the company today. There are also over 1,600 apprentices currently taking part in the apprenticeship programme, making it one of the largest and broadest apprenticeship schemes in the UK.

Amazon also launched new apprenticeship programmes for 2023 including cyber security and information communications technicians. The new apprenticeships highlight Amazon’s ongoing commitment to creating jobs and providing opportunities for training and up-skilling across the UK.

Speaking at the event, double-platinum-selling Cat Burns said:

“It’s been amazing to support young people with Apprentice Nation and celebrate ten years of Amazon apprenticeships in this incredible robotics fulfilment centre with such an inspiring group of people. So much of my own journey has been about ‘learning on the job’ and I know how valuable it is to have relatable mentors to offer support along the way. This event has shown just how powerful the combination of music and mentorship can be.”

Amazon’s UK Country Manager, John Boumphrey, speaking at the event said:

“We are exceptionally proud to be celebrating 10 years of our apprenticeship programme, providing opportunities for upskilling and retraining for people of all ages, at all stages of their careers.  Apprenticeships are key to equipping people with the skills they need to progress in today’s labour market, and we now offer one of the broadest and largest apprenticeship programmes in the UK. From young people entering the workplace for the first time, to older people looking to take their skills and careers in a new direction, our apprenticeship schemes illustrate that, at Amazon, there are opportunities for everyone.”

Stephen Greene CBE, CEO RockCorps & Producer of Apprentice Nation, said:

“This is a time where we are all questioning university as being the dominant career route. There are many other ways to a career.  That is what Apprentice Nation does - offers options - in this case through our exciting and unique partnership with Amazon. We are stoked to have Cat Burns perform in Dartford and share her inspiring story with others. What an artist!”

Minister for Skills, Apprenticeships and Higher Education Robert Halfon said:

“I applaud Amazon for its decade-long commitment to apprenticeships. Giving 5,000 people the opportunity to earn while they learn and develop the skills needed to succeed is key to building a skills and apprenticeships nation, and I hope that more employers follow in their footsteps.

“Over 90% of apprentices go into work or further training, and this is certainly true at Amazon. In fact, 85% of employees who completed their apprenticeships have gone on to build successful careers at the company, showing that an apprenticeship isn’t just a rung on the ladder of opportunity, it can take you all the way to the top.”

Apprentice Nation member, Jecoliah Frimpong, from Greenwich, said:

“This has been a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity - Cat Burns was incredible and the mentors were really inspiring. I had no idea there were so many opportunities and different apprenticeships available at Amazon and it will definitely make me think of doing an apprenticeship instead of going to university!”

After talking about her own career journey with host and Capital Radio DJ, Remel London, Cat Burns and her band performed a live set for the audience which included her hits Go and People Pleaser, all taking place in the state-of-the-art fulfilment centre. Cat has previously partnered with Amazon Music to release several exclusive performances including a live performance of Go ft Sam Smith,  and more recently Live More & Love More from the Amazon CURVED studio in London. 

Explore more about Apprentice Nation at

< Back