Substation Apprentice at National Grid

Start Date:
North West
Programme Type:
Apprenticeship - Higher Level (Level 4/5)
£23,500 annually
Review Date:
May 2018

Review Score

7.3 /10

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


The role that I have involves multiple aspects as expected from an apprenticeship. I am required to both take responsibility as a full employee of the company and also for my education as part of the scheme. This requires work during 9 to 5 hours and also many hours outside of this to complete both aspects to a good standard.

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


During the apprenticeship so far I have gained numerous recognised qualifications and certificates including training on mobile elevated work platforms with IPAF and construction and disassembly of scaffolding with PASMA. Hand skills have also been developed and learned with internal courses run by the training centre at Eakring, these have involved tool work and basic electrical skills for LV wiring.

3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?


The work itself is initially a very steep learning curve with a vast amount of regulations to learn about and also getting used to how the system works. The team of apprentices I work with are very supportive and work well together which shows its importance when we have a lot of deadlines in a short space of time.

4. How valued do you feel by National Grid?


I feel very valued by National Grid itself, the training staff in particular always make it clear how much we are needed and valued by the company. The university aspect of the course is slightly different in that we are treated as regular students and not as apprentices, where a lot of the lecturers have had no experience in the field and do not appreciate what we have to do on top of the work they set, although for the most part it is not unreasonable.

5. How well organised/structured is your programme?


The training itself within the programme is well structured and for the most part there is ample time to complete each course comfortably. The positioning of the training in the year however is not structured well to take into account university deadlines. For example important deadlines and numerous courses for the work itself were placed very close to and just before exams and assignment deadlines for university.

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


The training provider provides us with all the support we need, the staff that we are trained by for each course on the programme are always very supportive and will make sure that we fully understand everything before the end of the course. The LDC at the university is an invaluable resource for learning and the staff there are very helpful.

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


The training provider provides us with all the support we need, if ever I have needed anything I can always contact one of my managers and I will always be helped wherever possible with getting my problem corrected. There is a large amount of info to be found on the internal network as well that can be easily accessed if you need to find information quickly.

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


The salary for the apprenticeship is very good, travel costs for work are all covered by expenses, living costs are also met well.

8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?


With the workload that there is during this apprenticeship it is hard to find time to do much outside of work, most weekends require at least one day dedicated to more work. The company set up some social events using the new starters page but I have not been to one of these.

9. Would you recommend National Grid to a friend?


9b. Why?

There are fantastic career opportunities to be had at the end of the apprenticeship,

10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to National Grid?

Time management is probably the most crucial aspect of this apprenticeship, the application process is all very good and as long as you are prepared then you shouldn't find it difficult.

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