1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My job title is 'auto-mechanician' which involves both mechanics and electronics. I work on a variety of different vehicles, converting them from standard models to higher specification models, which mainly involves altering the trim, bodywork and wiring. A typical day at college consists of classroom learning and practical activities in the workshop, such as fault diagnosis, milling, turning and fitting. We also have a weekly tutorial session where we can ask for help with our assignments or any other issues we have.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have definitely learnt new skills since starting the course, I feel much more knowledgeable about the engineering and motor vehicle industry and understand the way the company works, as well as their future development goals. My existing teamwork and communication skills have developed as I am constantly working with a group of people in my class to learn new things. My confidence has improved since joining the apprenticeship and I am now able to confidently explain how a car works!
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I enjoy my time in plant as it is exciting to actually work on the cars, however I am not enjoying college as much. The hours are long and the workload is extremely demanding, I currently don't have a lot of spare time due to the amount of work we are expected to do for college. When the first year is completed I will definitely enjoy the course more as we are only at college one day a week (rather than full time), so the stress will hopefully ease off.
4. How valued do you feel by Jaguar Land Rover?
I feel valued by Jaguar Land Rover as we are treated the same as other existing employees. However as apprentices it can be difficult to get in touch with people at Jaguar Land Rover as we do not have access to the company portall, so I sometimes feel like we miss out on important updates or business news. We do have Jaguar Land Rover staff that work at our college, so we can speak to them about any issues and they will always try to help.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The programme is generally quite well structured, however there appears to be a lack of communication between college and plant. When I last attended plant, they didn't have any specific activities planned for the apprentices so we were spending a lot of time standing around and watching people do their job, which isn't what I expected. The college timetables are kept organised and up to date, and we are kept informed of important meetings etc by email which is very helpful.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I feel that I receive a good level of support from my training provider, however I don't think they realise the amount of work that we are expected to do, and it can sometimes be quite overwhelming as they aren't able to help. The college has rules and procedures (like all colleges), with a few that seem a bit outdated, and it sometimes feels like they are against us rather than working with us.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I feel that the support from Jaguar Land Rover is good, the only thing I would change is the level of communication between apprentices and the company, as it can be difficult to get in touch with people at JLR if you need assistance with something. There are a few members of staff from Jaguar Land Rover that visit college occasionally to check on the apprentices, however they don't speak to everyone as the visits are so quick, so it can be hard to get the answer/support you need.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
The salary is very good in comparison to most apprenticeships, however for older apprentices, or apprentices with living expenses/children etc it may be difficult for the first few years. We receive the same treatment as regular employees with regards to pay rises which is a huge bonus!
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
I haven't directly heard of many opportunities outside of work, and due to the amount of college work we receive I don't think that I would have the time to attend them. There is probably a lot of employee opportunities but as an apprentice I feel limited as we have set holidays/annual leave, and have to stick to the college timetable, so I am not sure if we would be allowed to attend if the opportunity clashed with college time.
9a. Would you recommend Jaguar Land Rover to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
I believe that the company values its people and treats everyone fairly. The overall package and employee benefits are good, with many discounts available to members of staff. I am proud to say I work for Jaguar Land Rover as they are a huge, reputable company and are always looking to improve and develop the business. The pension is good and the induction into Jaguar Land Rover is very informative and interesting.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Jaguar Land Rover? *
My advice would be to stay committed and research the company values. The apprenticeship is challenging but it is also very rewarding. Jaguar Land Rover look for driven, motivated individuals with forward-thinking ideas and a passion for perfection. Customer service is also important to the company, so you will need to always have the customer in mind when working on any task.
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