1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Maintenance Apprentice - Shadow maintenance personnel in daily tasks, learning on the job. Little given in the way of guidence by management, responsibility falls mainly to maintenance personnel you are working with
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Learnt new skills as part of National Apprentice Framework including; Hand-fitting, machining, welding along with both mechanical and electrical techniques. NVQ level 3, BTEC level 3 and HNC level 4 all gained. No training provided to expand skills outside of the base framwork (i.e. working at hights, confined spaces, forklift truck)
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
The programme is very simple and straight forward and gives a good grounding in maintenance. However, much of the information learnt is self taught, or picked up from working with other maintenance personnel, rather that guided tuition. The programme could be more challenging and enjoyable at times.
4. How valued do you feel by Vauxhall?
Recognition is hit and miss. Due to the infrequancy of review meetings, a clear picture of where you are at with your training and how the company feels about this can be a little confusing. When recognition is given, you do feel very valued.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Around 40 apprentices report to one apprentice co-ordinator, so sometimes communication lines become blurred. Infromation is perhaps not delivered in the correct way, or at the correct times. Review meetings are sporadic due to number of apprentices.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
If support is asked for, it is given, usually to a very good standard. Sometimes the support is not always forthcoming and has to be asked for a few times.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
The employer gives its best effort to support all apprentices with any venture they undertake within work. Sometimes this support is a little slow in materialsing though.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
Generally the salary is good, and meets travel costs. 3rd and 4th Year apprentices work a shift pattern, and as such recieve a shift rate for this. Compared to other similar apprenticeships the wage is less when reaching the 3rd and 4th year, but generally better for 1st and 2nd years.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
None really avaliable to apprentices due to the nature of employment. Sometimes apprentices are invited to attend college and careers fairs as a way to promote the apprenticeships.
9a. Would you recommend Vauxhall to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
The lack of guidenece with regard to training is an issue that can lead to people lacking a purpose when approaching NVQ jobs, making it difficult to complete. However, the support and knowledge gained from other maintenance personnel makes up for this.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Vauxhall? *
There are oppertunities to progress with different aspects of the engineering process open to apprentices depending on ability and mentality. Pay is relatively good, and the support given by other maintenance personnel is fantastic.
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