1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My job title is Pressure, Control and Storage Apprentice. My daily tasks when not training is to shadow a qualified engineer maintaining and servicing sites around Lincolnshire. As a first year apprentice my responsibility is mainly to assist in any way I can but mostly to learn as much as possible and take in as much knowledge as I can.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have been given extensive training and learned many new skills. I am currently attending West Cheshire College 9 weeks a year to study a BTEC in mechanical engineering. I have also undergone courses in drug and alcohol awareness, asbestos awareness, presentation skills, emergency first, manual handling, hazardous area training, confined spaces and emergency rescue training, fire control training, hand fitting techniques, forming and assembling pipework systems, working at heights, performing scaffolding, maintaining mechanical devices and systems and many more. I have learnt a whole range of new skills because of these courses, especially as my experience was limited before I got the apprenticeship.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I enjoy the programme very much, mainly because I am learning something new everyday and I enjoy the people I work with. The whole apprenticeship has exceeded my expectations and the company is good to work for.
4. How valued do you feel by National Grid?
I feel very valued by National Grid, my manager, supervisor, mentor and training co-ordinator have all helped and supported me throughout my programme so far. Mainly because, early in my apprenticeship I broke my leg and they all made exceptions to help me out such as re arranging courses for me and still making me feel involved even when I was off work.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The programme is very well organised and structured. The induction was long and in depth and even included an outward bound course which made you get to know all the other apprentices. We have a mentor on site who organises who we with when we go on site and he is always there if ever we have any queries, while our training co-ordinator arranges our courses and makes sure we are up to date with everything.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
We receive a lot of support, all the tutors and trainers are knowledgeable and happy to help you with any problems you come across in training. This also makes the training more enjoyable and allows you to feel more comfortable so you are not afraid to make mistakes.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I have received lots of support from my employer, mainly because of my time with a broken leg as I mentioned earlier. But the company as a whole is very supportive and I have often had to ring HR with a query which they are more than happy to help with. I also know I can go to my manager, supervisor, mentor or training co-ordinator if I have a query or an issue and they will help me.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
My salary is very good compared to other apprenticeships. I also get all travel costs covered.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
As a first year apprentice I havn't experienced many opportunities outside of work apart from a Christmas party which I attended. I am aware that there are external activites such as regional football teams but I havn't had the chance to participate just yet. While at training in Eakring, there is often things such as quiz nights and bowling nights.
9a. Would you recommend National Grid to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
They are a great company to work for, I have received a great amount of training which has allowed me to further myself and will stand my in good stead for the future. I have also made lots of new friends and receive a healthy salary!
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to National Grid? *
The application process is long and hard so do lots of research. I would also advise candidates to be themselves as I had no previous experience of a job like this before and still got hired, however that was one of my worries while I applying that I wouldn't get chosen because I had no experience.
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