1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
As an engineer, I undertake a very different role from a lot of the other school and college leavers on the same scheme from me: whereas nearly everybody else on the same scheme as me is working on site, I have been put on the early stages of a project and therefore work in an office. To add to this I work for an Alliance rather then just the standard company. I couldn't enjoy my role more: I currently participate in supplying a DFMA (design for manufacture and assembly) schedule which we are working closely with explore on (another part of our company)on / write DIA's (diversity impact assessments) / help put together DIS' (design input statements) / and work closely with the digital engineering team. Each individuals experience will be very different based on the project / site they are working on. I will be on site in the near future with the same project which I am sure will bring new excitement, opportunities and challenges too.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Having come to the industry with virtually no knowledge or experience (other then work experience done with several civil engineering companies) basically everything I have undertaken has been new knowledge to me. This has included using the internal intranet / digital engineering software / use of schedules / collaboration software. One of the main things I have picked up is the knowledge of BIM (building information modelling) - this is a massive part of any construction site nowadays.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I love my programme: I look forward to going into work everyday, and don't mind working the extra hours when required. It's the people you work with that does this most, but when the work is interesting, its definitely a bonus!
4. How valued do you feel by Laing O'Rourke?
When you come back off of annual leave and somebody comments on how much they've missed your help - there's no doubt you feel valued. To add to this, we do internal award systems, which makes you feel like you're wanted
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Very - far beyond what I ever imagined. Laing O'Rourke put a lot of effort into your personal development both personally and on a professional level - this is certainly evident from all the courses they pay for you to do, and the involvement with the ICE
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
A lot: my university is highly supportive, and so is the company and my mentors within it. Everyone at work is great too: thoroughly understanding of my academic studies and work load - and they help wherever possible
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I'm in a slightly different position - because I'm in an Alliance I work with a lot of other companies as kind of one company - I get an awful lot of support from those that work around me. Those in Laing O'Rourke are particularly helpful but you cannot fault anybody else - this says a lot about the industry that I work in as well as Laing O'Rourke
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
The salary is higher then a lot of apprenticeships so I cannot complain
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
There are if you make the most of everything that goes on in your site - through yourself into getting to know the people, and sports clubs / charity events and work gatherings all come with it!
9a. Would you recommend Laing O'Rourke to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
I couldn't have asked for a better employer: when compared to fellow part time students at my university who are being by sponsored company, it's fairly obvious that Laing O'Rourke employees are treated a lot better, with a strong emphasis on personal development. In the first six months, we had a 3 day introduction filled with talks from some of the highest ranked employees, team bonding exercises and input from students that have joined in previous years - it's very obvious that everyone wants the best from you. To add to this, the inside support network for both ICE studies / university studies / just day to day work is immense. The responsibility you get from your employer from a very early stage is far greater then I would have ever have imagined - a course very worth undertaking and applying for.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Laing O'Rourke? *
Make sure you have work experience (whether it be shadowing over somebody at work experience or part time work at the weekends) to demonstrate you're keen to be an employee within the industry - having other extra curricular experiences such a Duke of Edinburgh / world challenge / sports teams / house captain etc. will definitely help with employability skills. Preparing for interviews by writing out a series of generic questions and practising answers, as well as thorough research goes a long way too. Throughout the process you should always make sure you be yourself, but particularly during the assessment days: make sure you have your voice heard and show your strengths, but equally don't be too talkative so that the employers get the wrong impression. You should definitely be prepared to be worked hard, and prepare for some long days - but equally, remember that the rewards at Laing O'Rourke and the way you get treated as an employee definitely counteracts some of these negatives.
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