1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Since completing the apprenticeship at Perkins Engines I have been fortunate to move in to the Manufacturing Engineering team. In this role I am responsible for the 'hot' test process of every single engine that comes off of the line ensuring they comply to the set performance, emissions and quality limits. This involves keeping the process documentation relevant and up to date including standard work, PFMEAs and control plans. Monitoring test cell and engine data in order to maintain the standard setting and also predict failure, aid in fault finding and drive process improvement. Working with internal and external suppliers to implement process improvements and install new equipment where needed.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Perkins Engines is very keen to offer higher education to those who have the aptitude to go further and wish to improve. Personally I have been sponsored to complete a HNC and degree in engineering disciplines although I don't plan to stop there. Throughout my time here I have had many opportunities to better myself not only as an engineer, through further learning and experiences external to the apprenticeship, with world recognised qualifications such as six sigma lean manufacturing awards, first aid training and various PLC/ robotics training programmes. Finally I would like to add that as an employer Perkins Engines is very keen to promote professional registration with authorities such as the ImechE and IET and do offer to pay for membership fees where applicable.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I thoroughly enjoyed my time as an apprentice at Perkins Engines, I made some very good friends and feel like there is so much I would have missed out on if I had gone through the traditional route of A levels then university. The qualifications, skills and experience I have will stay with me for life.
4. How valued do you feel by Perkins Engines?
As an employee early in my career, I feel very appreciative of the opportunities I have for continued professional development and the support I have received from mangers over the years.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
From the very start the goals and outcomes of the apprentice scheme were laid out to me with time frames to go with them. Working with professionals and experienced people every day I was never far from guidance or support if I needed it. In terms of education the company also has ties to vast amounts of free books, journals and papers which I have found invaluable in completing my qualifications. The training provider used for the apprenticeship also as very close ties to Perkins Engines meaning the course offered is heavily influenced by the company keeping the college side of things relevant and up to standard.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
As mentioned before support will be all around you should you need it as you will be working with experienced professionals every day. There is also opportunity to join the mentoring programme where you will be paired with a senior employee who will be able to offer guidance throughout your career.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
As previously mentioned the company supports in many ways, through sponsorship of higher education, opportunities to get involved with STEM activities, mentorship programme, library of books, journals and papers, on site health surveys, etc
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
During the apprenticeship you will be given chances to work as part of the green power race team, promote STEM in schools and to future generations, various charity events and take part in the Peterborough Young Engineers events.
9. Would you recommend Perkins Engines to a friend?
Good company to work for, recognised world wide, keen to develop people and many opportunities to climb the career ladder.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Perkins Engines?
Be yourself, show enthusiasm in your work and a passion for engineering. As an apprentice your job is to learn.