Fareham IT firm Interpro takes on apprentice after MD impressed by customer service received at the till in town's closing Debenhams department store

A SCRIBBLED note on a till receipt has led to a promising career with an expanding IT company for a Fareham lad.

By Kimberley Barber
Monday, 20th September 2021, 4:04 pm

For 19-year-old Will Lancaster was manning the till during the final days of trading at Debenhams in Fareham Shopping Centre when Mark Abrams, boss of Interpro Technology Solutions, was out shopping with his family.

Mark was so impressed by the customer service offered by Will, even though the store was soon to close leaving him unemployed, that he scribbled down his contact details on a till roll and handed it to him.

Will, who lives in Fareham, responded immediately that evening and the upshot was the offer of a role with Interpro as an apprentice, in conjunction with Portsmouth-based PETA Training & Consultancy.

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Mark Abrams and Will Lancaster at his new apprentice at Interpro Technology Solutions. Photo by Matthew Clark

Managing director Mark said: ‘We were seriously thinking about appointing an apprentice but hadn’t fully formulated our plans when I met Will in Debenhams and realised he had a great persona about him and excellent customer service abilities.

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‘As a company, our ethos at Interpro is that we hold customer service in almost higher regard than technical skills – certainly for someone we are looking to train – so I had no hesitation in giving him my details.

‘I was hugely impressed that he followed up quickly, realised he was already registered with PETA as he was considering starting an apprenticeship so we progressed our plans. Will then stood out at interview and got offered the job.

Will Lancaster at his new apprenticeship at Interpro Technology Solutions Limited. Photo by Matthew Clark

‘Ever since he has really taken to it like a duck to water and has already added value to Interpro, making him a real success story. Everybody here loves him. We are very much investing in our future with Will.’

Will, born in Plymouth to naval parents and part-raised in Gibraltar, has been building PCs, helped with the firm’s recent office move, has started getting into web design and played a big role in the roll-out of Interpro’s security software.

He said: ‘I was considering what to do as a career when I got the amazing opportunity to come here that I couldn’t turn down. I’m very happy that it came about by accident and I am determined to do my very best for Interpro.’

Mark Abrams and Will Lancaster at his new apprenticeship at Interpro Technology Solutions. Photo by Matthew Clark

Will, who was educated at Ranvilles Junior School, Fareham Academy and Fareham College, started the first of five courses over 18 months through PETA at the beginning of September.

Interpro, based in two units on the Fareham Heights business park since last month after acquiring a second freehold property, provides managed outsourced IT support.

Founded in 2005, the 17-strong company also specialises in websites, servers, networking, hosted telephone systems, software development and broadband solutions across the UK.

The firm has just enjoyed its best ever financial quarter, has won new contracts, continues to expand and will shortly be recruiting new staff.

It boasts 200 clients and works with some of the leading brands on the south coast, including L&S Waste Management, Aquila Air Traffic Management Services, Mary Rose Museum and White Recruitment.