Controls Engineer at Jaguar Land Rover

Start Date:
West Midlands
Programme Type:
Degree Apprenticeship
£16,000 annually
Review Date:
April 2018

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Review Score

6.4 /10

1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:


Controls engineer working with mainly PLC software and complex electrical equipment such as variable speed drives. Daily tasks include software modifications and improvements and problem solving for the electrical equipment within the facility. I also conduct projects to improve the facilities automation and controls, looking for innovative solutions.

2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?


I have learnt how to use many different kinds of PLC programming software such as RSlogix, ProWorx and Step7. I have learnt how to properly read electrical wiring diagrams and understand electrical theory which I can apply to hardware in the field. I have also learnt valuable communication skills so that I can work with ease alongside contractors and fellow colleagues to get projects finished.

3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?


On the whole the apprenticeship programme has been a enjoyable experience. It could have been managed better as we were the first cohort for JLR to enter on to the degree apprenticeship. There were some changes to my job role early on in the programme which affected where I was based and the skills I needed to learn but I have adapted to this in time.

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4. How valued do you feel by Jaguar Land Rover?


I rarely receive any recognition for my actions as a degree apprentice. I think there could be more incentive for degree apprentices especially within maintenance as there is not much encouragement from managers to do well. Managers within maintenance are not trained about what a degree apprenticeship is and therefore find it difficult to know our role within the company and what we should be doing.

5. How well organised/structured is your programme?


I only received proper training on how to complete my NVQ level 4 in the final year of my apprenticeship which meant it has now been crammed into a small time frame to be completed. The structure of the programme overall has been constantly changed and support from the work area has been limited. Nevertheless, there has been constant meetings with my training mentor throughout the apprenticeship.

6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?


The training provider could refer to either EEF (NVQ), Warwickshire college (foundation degree) or Warwick university (BEng (Hons)). EEF have been OK. Their training mentor has been good with conducting constant progress meetings and the NVQ support is generally good. Warwick uni are exceptional with their AEP degree programme. Warwickshire college were slightly understaffed with the massive influx of JLR apprentices at the time leading to a shortfall in training.

6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?


Overall at work, it has been a struggle at times, as degree apprentices within maintenance are not very well communicated to the managers and therefore it is not known what their role should be. There is a lack of acknowledgement from management when projects are completed, or even acknowledgement of being part of the team.

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7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?


My salary has been very good for the course of the apprenticeship.

8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?


There are plenty of company events outside of work to attend either at the weekend or in the week depending on what site you are based at. I think there is significantly more event at product development sites rather than production sites which is a shame.

9. Would you recommend Jaguar Land Rover to a friend?


9b. Why?

Overall JLR are a good company to work for. I think as we were part of the first cohort of degree apprentices for JLR there were a few hiccups in the structure and organisation of the course. Now, it is probably much better and the organisation is there to support the degree.

10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Jaguar Land Rover?

Make sure you know as much information as possible about the company, and dress well for the interview. Try to do work aside from your normal daily life that involves team work and problem solving, this will help with the interviews and assessments. Make sure that you revise maths and mechanics if you are applying for engineering roles.

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