Meet the newest member of the Mall Galleries team: our Digital Assistant, Sasha.  

In this digital and social media age, the need for Mall Galleries / Federation of British Artists to have a stronger presence on the internet and a complete digital strategy has become a necessity. Hence the past few years have seen new websites launched for the Mall Galleries, Royal Society of Marine Artists and Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours, and increasing interaction with social media across the art societies for whom Mall Galleries is home (seven out of the eight national art societies within the Federation are now on Twitter and Facebook, while Mall Galleries has a popular presence on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube, not forgetting Google+).

Crucially, the upgraded Mall Galleries website has enabled society exhibitions to be published and archived online, so that their Annual Exhibitions are available to view year round, from near or far, in the comfort of one's home, or 'on the move' via mobile phone or iPad even. 

Marrying the growing demands of the digital world and our commitment to education, we have partnered with Step Forward, a fully-supported London employment programme for ambitious school leavers and forward-thinking employers, to employ a school leaver as an apprentice to learn and contribute digital skills in a professional environment whilst also training for a qualification. 

Liam Kilby, Digital Manager

Through a new apprenticeship programme known as Step Forward, I have joined Mall Galleries as a Digital Assistant for the next twelve months.

Step Forward is a new apprenticeship programme that started in 2014, it is a one year programme that is designed to help 18-year-old school leavers in London create their own network in the working world. The programme is 12 months long and during these months the associates spend 4 days working for a company and 1 day training with their chosen pathway whilst receiving training for personal development.

During training days, associates train with experienced tutors from their selected pathway to obtain a BTEC Level 3 Diploma specific to their programme.

The Personal Development training has been designed to help them learn the unwritten rules of the workplace as well as to develop general workplace skills and working with different groups of people.

My chosen pathway is Social Media and Digital Marketing and throughout the next 12 months I will be learning:

  • How to use HTML
  • How to use Imaging Software
  • The importance of Keyword Optimisation
  • The importance of Social Media
  • How to create and maintain websites

The Step Forward programme began a few weeks ago and I have had one training session so far. During this session I have learnt the basics of HTML. This includes creating an HTML document, how to add text and images as well as how to change the colour of the text and background of the website.

As part of the Step Forward program, I will be working within Mall Galleries four days a week, where I will be applying the theory I have learnt during the training sessions. So far I have worked for the gallery for three days, during which I have sent emails, added myself to the team on the website, added referral and redirect links, created twitter cards and scheduled tweets on the twitter account for the gallery.

I hope to achieve my BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Social Media in Business whilst gaining new digital skills in a professional environment. I also hope that I will have no regrets and that I have done all of my tasks to the best of my abilities as well as to do many challenging projects during the year.

Sasha Enticknap, Digital Assistant