1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am a design engineer within suspension systems architecture - Chassis. This involves both the design and release of suspension components. I work in a team of about 15 people who I regularly interact with and I also work with a Spanish supplier who I communicate with daily on my days in plant. I am currently working on a CAE project which involves modelling suspension joints in CAD in order for initial design concepts to be developed more accurately. Some of my everyday activities include CAD, Calculations, Meetings with other members of the team to share knowledge and visits to other areas of the business for experience.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I am in the process of gaining a foundation degree in engineering. I have learnt a lot about materials, manufacturing and business and project management. I have also massively developed my maths skills. Within plant I have been on many training courses most significantly CAD. I have learnt how to interract with different people within the business and have also had oppertunity to develop my presentation skills.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I thoroughly enjoy my role at work. I like the culture in both my department and the company I feel it is very supportive and there are opportunities to get involved in different things. My job has surpassed my expectations. College is not as organised as I would have expected and there has been quite a few problems with lecturers and grading.
4. How valued do you feel by Jaguar Land Rover?
I feel valued by my department at work I have been given a lot of responsibility and opportunities to get involved in various projects. At college I feel like the apprentices can in some situations be treated like children and our suggestions are not always listened to.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The induction week was well structured, relevant and by the end of it I felt ready to start the programme. The overall apprenticeship is structured well with regular meetings with our work based learning managers. I was not enrolled on the correct subjects for my role and had to organise getting this corrected myself. There is quite a lot of lack of communication in terms of term times, timetable change overs, and holidays. There is sufficient support for study and assignments.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
The college as a whole is supportive and most lecturers make themselves available when help is required. Some lecturers are not supportive a tall and assignment feedback is poor. I enjoy all of my subjects but sometimes the lack of guidance is frustrating.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
Both my manager and the HR team are very supportive. The general attitude of both the manager and the team towards me is both supportive and encouraging. I feel my work based learning manager takes more of a back foot and has not resolved one of the main problems I am having with getting access to training which does not support my development.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
I feel the salary package is far superior when compared to other apprenticeship providers. The issue is that for my working location the tows/cities within appropriate distance have very high living costs. Due to significant traffic my fuel costs are much higher than estimated. As we study more than 21 hours a week we qualify as ful[l time students so should receive council tax exemption but the college is not supportive with providing evidence of this therefore increasing costs.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Yes. I have had the opportunity to get involved with many company events which promote the apprenticeship to young people in schools and at big events like the NEC SKills Show. I play for a local rugby team and get involved with team social events within my department. I spend a lot of time outisde of work with friends from the apprenticeship.
9a. Would you recommend Jaguar Land Rover to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
The academic opportunities are very good as well as the chance to obtain 6 years experience. The job roles are very good and the oppertunities internally and externally make it much more prefferable to a degree. Also the fact that I can earn while I learn.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Jaguar Land Rover? *
Read all the supportive materials before attending the interview. Take your time with the on-line application. If you are successful revise A level maths as this is what most apprentices find the most significant challenge is in the first 2 years.
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