1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am a procurement trainee and I work in head office. I assist my manager with various tasks in managing our supply chain, this involves review meetings, audits, and pricing analysis. I also help with central procurement in IT, this involves ording IT and stationary equipment as well as directing new supplier enquiries to the right part of the business.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Since starting in September, I have learnt many new skills from basic professional skills such as speaking on the telephone, and communicating via email, to training courses for softwares that the company uses, and business risk courses.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I enjoy the programme I am on as it allows us to learn on the job as well as gaining a degree in my chosen area. The company also has its own in house programme in which we meet with other cadets each quarter to develop our skills and team building. This has helped as it gives us a chance to speak with other cadets and learn from eachothers experiences.
4. How valued do you feel by Laing O'Rourke?
I feel valued by Laing O'Rourke as we are treated as every other employee and not as if we are a trainee/apprentice. Every employee I have come across thus far has appreciated my job role and my manager the same. When I started I felt as if I did not have a lot to do however this was discussed with my line manager and changed accordingly, I have now settled into my job role and feel appreciated by all.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
When I started we had a three day event in which I met the other cadets on my cohort, this gave me a good introduction to my colleagues and the company. There is continued support in terms of studying, we receive three study days per year to take around exam times which helps greatly. We also have a mentor to go to if we are struggling with anything including work/life balance, and there are also many other cadets from previous years who have all been willing to help and assist.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I go to Southbank university for my degree. They have been very helpful when needed however I would say the lectureres/tutor are quite hard to contact but there is a lot of online support if needed.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
There are great amounts of support from Laing O'Rourke. We are assigned a mentor, a buddy and a HR person who are all here to help with anything in or out of work. This is great as if there are any problems I can go to my mentor and know it is confidential and they can offer advise/ guidance on the problem. We are constantly reminded of the support that is available if we are struggling with the programme.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
All travel costs are reimbursed which helps a lot (including travel to university). My commute to work is an hour drive from where I live which I feel is acceptable and the office is very easy to get to. I think the staring wage is average for the London area however I know this will increase with time.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
We are encouraged to volunteer once or twice a year. This year my team voulnteered at a local wildlife centre where we donated materials and time/labour to renew and extend a building in the centre plus the gardens. Each year we pick a different initiative to get involved with. We also do events such as Race for Life to raise money for charities and the cadet programme holds sporting events such as tag rugby etc.
9. Would you recommend Laing O'Rourke to a friend?
Laing O'Rourke - It is a great opportunity for school leavers to gain an accredited degree which is paid for, and plus having a guaranteed job once completed. The support from the company is amazing, there is always a team of people to assit with anything and the effort and organisation of getting our year (2014) cadets together is brilliant and allows you to meet people of the same level to share advise and experience.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Laing O'Rourke?
The application process involves an online application, plus telephone, group and individual interviews. The group interview involved a few tasks such as a presentation on particular subject and a group discussion. However, the interviewers were extremely relaxed and made you feel at ease during the experience. They understand that you may not have a great deal of experience and focus on your personality and willingness to learn which I loved.
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