1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I am an apprentice Launch Engineer at Jaguar Land Rover. Activities I am involved in include launch and build planning, vehicle specification, reworks and BIW planning. These activities require me to lead a team and report out regularly on project progress. I am required to work across sites during a new vehicle launch.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I have learnt a lot of skills as part of this apprenticeship. Leadership, communication, planning, CAD, milling, turning, fabrication, welding, fitting, CAE & analytical skills. Through university I have also done materials, measurement, finance, GD&T, business, project management and leadership as well as other modules. All these modules I am required to link back to work through the assignments.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I have thoroughly enjoyed this apprenticeship. The college 2 years at the start were not well managed. However, my work at Jaguar Land Rover has allowed me to grow immensely throughout the 6 years and the amount of responsibility I have been given has made me really feel like I am contributing to the company. Work have paid for all my training whilst giving me a very competitive salary.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
From a Warwickshire college and apprenticeship management perspective it could be better. Often issue that apprentices raise take a long time to be resolved. There have also been instances of modules being missed and extra time being required to complete as a result. This being said, at work my time as an apprentice has been well managed and Warwick University are always well organised and structured and communicate to us clearly.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I have a manager at work as well as a mentor, both who I can ask for support from. I also have a personal development rep who I can talk to about my career aspirations away from my manager. I also have a work based learning manager who I have bimonthly touch points with to raise any issues and track how I'm progressing.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
This varies significantly depending on the lecturers at college / university. Again, generally, university are much better as providing support where required. We have personal tutors at university we can see to discuss issues and I would talk to my work based learning manager about college / university issues. Support from work based learning managers is always good but getting support from the apprenticeship team can be difficult.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
Certain modules at university including business, project management and leadership, finance, materials, and product development have been particularly useful for me. These link with my job but have pushed me to think more in depth in certain areas to deepen my understanding. The workshop learning we did at college was also very useful to get an appreciation for manufacturing processes.
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 organised social activities with my team and attended activities organised by others. These are often meals out / comedy nights / table tennis etc. I have also used my Employee Learning Discount of £200 which is given to each JLR employee to fund a learning activity to do a learn to ski in a day activity with my team. We have also done tree planting CSR activities and team building days off-roading.
9a. Would you recommend Jaguar Land Rover to a friend?
My development throughout my time at JLR has been significant. The growth I can notice in myself since the first day when I was shy and nervous is dramatic. I have had so many great experiences, earned a good wage, had my studies paid for and done work that has given me responsibilities and has been intellectually stimulating.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Jaguar Land Rover?
Be yourself - The application process always focuses more on the individual and willingness to learn and apply yourself - particularly for apprentice level roles. If you have an interest in maths or science engineering is a great route to look at that I myself didn't initially consider. It's a great opportunity so why not?!
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