1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
On a daily basis I currently work within a team working on major upgrades of stations. I do a lot of work around keeping stakeholders up to date with the upgrade, liaise with operational staff and attend upgrade meetings with people at all levels of the business. My official role is a sponsor which over-sees the whole project to ensure it runs on time and does not over spend.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have learnt many skills as this is my first placement, I have learnt about collaborating with people, report writing and I have dramatically been able to increase my confidence to be able to talk to people and lease with the right sorts of people. I have increased my time keeping as I have had to travel to work, keep up my hobbies, work full time whilst trying to get a degree.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
We are still new to the scheme and I have enjoyed what I have been doing so far but I think that we should have more of a say in what placements we get to do; as 6 months is a very long time to be in a placement that we do not what to be in. But in order to do this we should be told different parts of TFL that exist as I currently am unaware of what most people even do so cannot show an interest until I know.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
I think it could be much better organized. There is a lack of communication between the university and TFL and they seem to contradict each other masking it very hard to know what is going on and what actually needs to be done. I like how we get to see different parts of the business but it would be much more helpful if they let us choose placements even if they gave us options and we ranked the ones that we would like to do.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I don't feel like I get much support, we have a sponsor who is meant to oversee and guide you through the process but in comparison to other apprentices sponsors, mine doesn't seem to care and seemed socially awkward the one time we have met up which makes him very hard to approach; he also takes a very long time to reply to emails sent. However, my placement manager has been extremely helpful and in my eyes has been much more supportive than my sponsor.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
The university does not provide much support; due to us being on a different program than the full time students and the other degree apprentices they don't seem to know what is going on which means that we get mixed messages on what we are meant to be doing and they do not seem to understand that we work full time so will find certain deadlines and expectations extremely difficult to meet.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
At the moment in time I do not think that my degree has helped in any way in the role that I am doing. Over time the links may seem more apparent but there is currently nothing that I learn at university that I am able to use whilst at work.
8. Are there extra-curricular activities to get involved in at your work? (For example, any social activities, sports teams, or even professional networking events.)
I think there is but these are not widely spoken about and I wouldn't even know where to look to find out if I wanted to attend these events. But at the moment with the amount of university work it is very hard to attend events like this due to a lack of time.
9a. Would you recommend Transport for London to a friend?
It depends on the person as it is hard work trying to complete a full time job, travel and complete university work so it takes a lot of commitment however it is a great company to work for because you get to work and get a degree and you are likely to be able to get a job after.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Transport for London?
Research what Tfl does as an organisation. Find out if its policies aims and goals really interest you. Consider the hours in which it operates and how you would get to and from locations where shift work applies. Make sure it is really what you want to do and don't get lured in by the salary and conditions because whilst they are excellent, its no good if you really dont enjoy it.
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