1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My job title is a Laboratory Technician. The department I work in is involved with the design and testing of inhaler products. Some of my daily tasks include functional and dimensional testing and designing fixtures to be used in the lab.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have learnt and developed many skills since starting the apprenticeship. I have had various internal courses including training for new pieces of equipment (microscope) and safety training. I have also had an external injection molding training course. My personal skills have also improved including communication skills.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I have enjoyed my apprenticeship very much so far and I am continuing to look forward to the rest of my apprenticeship time. There is a good variety of work and the team of people are great to work with.
4. How valued do you feel by 3M UK?
I feel very valued by 3M. I do feel that I am appreciated by my manager, we have regular meetings where he discusses how well I am doing in the workplace. I am also well involved with the various different projects that are currently taking place.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The structure and organisation of the apprenticeship program is very good. I had an induction to the team and workplace, which was followed by training for health and safety and some testing techniques. There are continued regular meetings for task delegation and individual catch ups, which is good.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I receive very good support from my tutor at college. We have 1 lesson each week where college assignments are completed. There are also regular on site visits when he comes to the workplace and supports the NVQ side of the apprenticeship, including carrying out observations. There is the availability of support with problems if needed.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
My manager has a good attitude to supporting me. As stated before, we have regular catch up meetings to discuss progress and if there are any problems I may have. There is support available with human resources also.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
The salary of the apprenticeship is very reasonable and suitable for my current living and travelling costs. I am local to the area so travelling is fine. I recently had a pay rise for completing 1 year of the apprenticeship, which is a great bonus.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
There are various different opportunities available outside of working time. From time to time there are activities that all employees can take part in e.g. 3M 'its a knockout' event. There have also been celebratory department meals and there is a football sports club at the 3M sports ground, which I will be going to.
9. Would you recommend 3M UK to a friend?
I would definitely recommend a 3M apprenticeship to a friend. It has been an excellent experience into the workplace so far and I am looking forward to the rest of my apprenticeship. I have gained great knowledge of the company, the department and the day o day testing activities. I am working with a great team and I have improved my key hardworking and communication skills.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to 3M UK?
One of the most important tips I would give to other people applying to 3M is to research the company and the job position they are applying for. The main thing is to be well prepared for the interview and not to stress out as it is not a stressful experience.
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