1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
No day is the same for me at ATKINS, being the apprentice I get to experience various departments and help out where possible; if I'm not helping I am certainly learning! Some days I am on site and other days in the office which is a nice combination! I get to organise and carry out my own (low risk) monitoring visits which is not only fun but help teaches me to be independent. I suppose one negative I have is that occasionally at times I need lots of support due to my limited knowledge but everyone around me is busy meeting their deadlines.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Almost daily I have learnt something new since working at ATKINS which was a key reason why I wanted to be an apprentice. I have been supported to obtain my CSCS card which not only increased my knowledge in Health and Safety but also allowed me to do more site work. ATKINS will support you in finessing your skills and help you pursue those you wish to develop.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I enjoy the programme very much, learning is a constant thing for me which is something I enjoy. I sometimes find myself in need of frequent 1 to 1 tuition on CAD but not always is someone available to help so I have to resort to Google. I find all the projects I am involved with highly interesting and already 6 months on, I have made an impact to the world around me!
4. How valued do you feel by Atkins?
I had my reservations when applying to such a big company; with the thought that I'd just be another number on the database and nothing more. I was far from wrong, ATKINS values its staff highly because we are its only asset. This has allowed me to have full support in learning what I wish. I would like to see more frequent feedback from my manager because this is one quick way of getting better
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Since starting I haven't been treated like anything other than an employee. The induction, on going training and support has been perfected over the years. I'd like to work more closely with my mentor on projects as at the moment I receive work from my manager so when I need help, he is the only one who has specific knowledge to my questions.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
College has been highly supportive. Any questions I have they have been able to answer although it may take them 30 minutes to explain a simple question. I can contact my college teachers by email or mobile which is useful.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
My manager is often busy and so I receive some support but would like more. If I have a problem there are many people around me to help but if they are busy meeting tight deadlines I feel rude for asking which I know I shouldn't. HR is very supportive and able to answer any question I have very quickly.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
I would say I live a less than average lifestyle through choice; but for the most part I have a few hundred pounds left over monthly. This is once my rent money (to parents) car running costs and insurance + petrol has been taken out. I would not be able to afford to move out with this which is something I'd be keen to do but in current situation I am doing Ok.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
As soon as I was offered my place at ATKINS, I was also invited to an annual apprentice event where we all get to meet up and learn about what ATKINS want from us and what we should expect from it. Even in my small office there are several lunch time clubs such as badminton and cycling for those interested.
9. Would you recommend Atkins to a friend?
If you want to learn and be paid, ATKINS does not fail to deliver. Their are many opportunities open to all employees and the chance to re-locate or change job roles is one that is available.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Atkins?
As always read through your application! Make sure you seem keen to learn, as that's ideally what its about. I am not the most confident person but I believe I got the job due to my willingness to learn and develop my skills while contributing to the world around me.
If you do make it to the interview stage that is great! But make sure you ask for a visitors parking space to be reserved, I forgot to do this and ended up parking somewhere I shouldn't! GOOD LUCK!
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