QA Trainee at BAE Systems

Start Date:
Barrow-in-Furness North West
Programme Type:
£17,500 annually
Review Date:
June 2015

Review Score


1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:

  1. I am a Quality Assurance Trainee who joined the business back in September of 2014. my role varies from placement to placement. On my current placement my day to day job involves reviewing documents to bring them up to date before 2016 and communicating between the guys on the shop floor who write all of these Work Instructions (documents)

I also attend a variety of meetings, some of which may not be relevant to my job at the time, but i am trying to gather information from across the business and i am also very capable of creating accurate minutes and arranging the following actions from said meeting.

Working under Early Careers, who i am directly employed under, my role consists of learning & development which involves placement work, attending and participating on the relevant training courses (e.g. Problem solving or Business transformation course) and taking part in extra curricular activities such as Stretch assignments which can involve charity work, local community work and etc.

2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?


I believe i have learnt many new skills since joining the business. such as:

becoming more confident - being in a very professional and serious work environment requires high quality work and on time deliverables. before joining the business i was very shy and afraid of asking for help or support if needed. But because of the expectation of work being completed on time, it has helped me to realise that it is okay to ask for help and crucial to work together to make sure the job gets done to the highest quality and on time. despite still having room to improve, I believe I have strongly improved my organisational skills and time management methods since joining BAE Systems. as mentioned, these are very busy times for BAE and we, as trainees, are expected to adapt to this and make the most of the time we have available at work. this means creating our own personal methods of prioritising work

3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?


I do enjoy my programme as it is challenging and rewarding in different ways.

our objectives set by our placement managers are designed to improve our skills from the previous placement but introduce us to new tasks which require different skills and knowledge.

and the opportunities outside of work, provided by the company, are also excellent and enjoyable and provide a fresh look on the company which is not expressed in the local press enough, in my opinion.

4. How valued do you feel by BAE Systems?


As a trainee, it is sometimes easy to feel undervalued as we have not had the time and experience in the company to offer valuable inputs and suggestions.

however, the company constantly remind us that we are valued and suggestions for improvements and new ideas are not only welcome but always looked at and considered.

with the funding we are given to go on training courses and out of work experiences this also makes us feel valued and appreciated at work.

5. How well organised/structured is your programme?


the programme is quite well structured in the sense of arranging training course, through the use of 'Success Factor', providing support in terms of Pay slips, arranging our 12 week HA reviews to make sure everything is going well and providing general support.

However, i do feel that the programme can be unorganised sometimes due to Early careers team being unavailable, obviously cant be helped sometimes, and the communication between early careers and our capability manager/placement managers. this issue was raised at the last Early Careers conference meeting.

6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?


I believe we get good support from our training provider, early careers, in different ways.

as mentioned, we get sent on a lot of useful training courses which are all paid for by early careers which are helping us develop and increase our value as a BAE employee. they also provide good support when we face any problems whether they be at work or more personal ones.

6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?


our training provider also give excellent support during meetings like our 'back to work' meetings when we have been off on sick. they are kind and understanding and inform/remind us of the company policy in a polite and friendly manner so as to ensure us and not make us more nervous.

I feel that i have been given good support from my employer, Placement managers, from the start (September) in terms of development, positive feedback, constructive improvement suggestions and many more examples. from my employer on a more general scope, the daily Comm's provide good sources of information which can affect us all and provide an easy way quickly learn of new developments not just on Barrow site but regarding the company as a whole

However, there are some times where i believe we become stressed as it is hard to get the time from managers/staff members for the necessary support we might need. and some time scales are unrealistic as we have other commitments from Early Careers and etc.

7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?


Being my age, i believe our Salary package meets our costs well with paying bills like board, car bills and other extras such as phone or gym.

we also have our SMR's as a chance to increase our salary which is a great incentive. however, looking at other companies salary boosts for excellent performance, i think the salary rewards for different levels (scores) could be improved.

It is also unclear on how our salary will progress over the scheme, if at all, with a majority of us on the trainee scheme looking into buying real estate in the not so distant future.

however, as a starting salary for a training programme which could lead to a job for life, i really cannot complain about the salary package.

8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?


As previously mentioned throughout this survey, there are plenty of opportunities outside of work in the form of stretch assignments, learning & development programmes and business trips which involve visiting other sites e.g. Faslane or Southern sites.

these opportunites are easily found either using the intranet site, email communication or through Early career forums.

9. Would you recommend BAE Systems to a friend?


9b. Why?

I would recomment BAE Systems to a friend becuase of the unique work on offer here and it is a chance to work for a prestige company who produce a world class product.

the opportunities avaiable through this business are second to none and proove to be a huge benefit for working in BAE Systems.

10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to BAE Systems?

when applying to BAE Systems, i would recommend the applicant to make sure they show off all their past experience to show them what they have learnt previously and what they can bring to the company.

make the most of the opportunity to show of their uniqueness and individuality.

Team work is very important and would say to show plenty of examples where they have had to work in a team, what was the challenge, what went well but more importantly what lessons were learned and how have these been implemented for the future.

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