System engineer apprentice at Schneider Electric

Start Date:
2014
Location:
Coventry Central London & City
Programme Type:
Apprenticeship - Advanced Level (Level 3)
Salary:
£15,000 annually
Review Date:
May 2018

Review Score

8.1/10

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

10/10

My role as an apprentice at Schneider Electric involves working on standard Gas, Water & Electric Projects. My day to day roles include a varity of acitivies including configuration of SCADA systems, testing SCADA systems, on site commissioning, liasing with customers, writing/reviewing documents and following company processes.

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

10/10

During my time at Schneider Electric as an apprentice I worked on major UK Gas infrastructure projects as a Junior SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) engineer, such as the National Grid iEP Project. Working on this project for a year and a half I gained valuable skills and knowledge such as working with customers to meet specification, following laid out processes, following legislation, communication within a team, writing/reviewing documents, following and writing test scripts to cover the required test specifications.

During the project I was given tasks that have increased in both importance and complexity; starting with the Mimic build work (the interface used to monitor Gas for the whole of the UK), to taking over in monitoring and coordinating the mimic build work by overseeing a small group of contractors, to now being responsible for direct communication with the system end users on site at National Grid Warwick to finalise any modifications needed before it goes Live in July 2016.

I also worked on the Thames Water System replacement project. During the factory acceptance testing stage of the project, I used software such as RSLogix 5000 and Netview to test IO Signals. I later commissioned sites such as pumping stations and water treatment sites , alongside Thames Water System Operators. This involved doing end to end tests sending IO Signals to sites, where an ICA engineer then confirmed he received the signal on the Remote terminal unit and then sent signals back to the Thames water control room.

In order to complete my Advanced Apprenticeship I had to complete wiring and testing activities. This included a Test Rig for Schneider’s Talus T4e Remote Terminal Unit, its own version of a PLC. This test rig had to then be tested by configuring the RTU to start simulating pulses/controls using ClearSCADA software to test its digital and analogue I/O. By completing this job activity it helped me gain a basic knowledge of PLC’s, as well as the process of drawing and approving wiring schematics and learning wiring best practices.

I also had the opportunity to travel down to the Luton Schneider office once a week to gain experience in the mechanical build and subsequent wiring of a 2 bay full size (2 metre high) RTU panel. During this activity I learnt the basics of panel building and the best practices involved.

3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?

8/10

I really enjoyed the program as I felt I was always developing and moving forward. This was down to the support of my collegues and regular one to one meetings with my line manager, which we created a development plan bespoke to me and my goals.

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4. How valued do you feel by Schneider Electric?

8/10

I feel valued as an apprentice, which is reflected in my yearly Apraisal review with my line manager.

5. How well organised/structured is your programme?

8/10

The programme is structured effectively with a 30 day induction period , followed by the relevant training and support to slowly break you in to the the programme.

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

8/10

I recieved regular support from my tutor, with monthly review meetings to assess my progress with the qualification. They provided guidance and advice in how to overcome any issues I encounter, in getting the correct training and opportunities.

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

8/10

My employer worked well with me and my tutor to provide the opportunities and training required to complete all units of the apprenticeship. They attended regular review meetings with me and my tutor to help complete my apprenceship.

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

6/10

Salary was above minimum.

8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?

7/10

Schneider run social events club out of working hours if you want to join in. It is also close to a gym where you can get a discounted membership price.

9. Would you recommend Schneider Electric to a friend?

Yes

9b. Why?

They provide alot of guidance, support and training to help progress your career.

10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Schneider Electric?

Be enthusiastic and take advantage of the opportunies given.

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