Trainee Engineer at BT

Start Date:
Cardiff, UK
Programme Type:
Apprenticeship - Intermediate Level (Level 2)
£11 hourly
Review Date:
May 2019

Review Score

2 /10

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


Installing phone lines in customers homes or businesses. Adding fibre broadband to existing and new phone lines. Fixing faults with phone and broadband. Being an ambassador for the company. Helping other Openreach engineers to complete their jobs as and when required. Learning new skills in order to fulfil my role more effectively.

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


Most of the skills are similar in nature to previous roles I have had. Most cabling techniques are similar to various electrical jobs I have had in the past. Really, the only new skill has been using the technology such as the JDSU associated with the role I am in.

3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?


I find the classroom part of the NVQ to be tedious and pointless. I found most of the tasks were completely unrelated to the role we face as engineers. I completed my NVQ work months in advance and yet have still not had it signed off by my assessor. I found the assessor to be mostly absent during our sessions.

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4. How well organised/structured is your programme?


Completely unstructured due to lack of direction and input from the assessor. The course itself had very little involving the engineering role. It possibly made more sense for the previous role requirements however as technology has updated we found that the work was now irrelevant or basic knowledge for most.

5. How much support do you receive from your employer?


It varies. As far as assistance for completing our role it is very good. There are 'coaches' available to assist with queries throughout the working day which is incredibly valuable however, there are many limits placed on trainees that can complicate things. There are constant changes in management which cause extensive issues to the trainee teams. I have had 4 different managers in 8 months and am about to move on to a new team with yet another new manager. This makes it difficult as each manager has different ideas and requirements for their teams.

6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?


Very little. Beyond being allocated days to complete the NVQ work the lack of presence and help from the instructor made it very difficult to complete tasks. Also, having completed the NVQ in advance had no impact on the instructor. I have been promised to have it verified over 2 months and am only 1 week away from my 'completion date' and it has yet to be reviewed. Failure to complete the review from the assessor will result in me being held back and missing out on the pay rise I have worked for.

7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?


Not at all. The qualification is mostly associated with use of computers and the internet. It has no relevance whatsoever to the role or any of the tasks involved. It may have had more relevance in the past but with mobile technology being utilised now it no longer had any baring on the job role.

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.)


Almost None. At least they aren't widely advertised to apprentices. There was a Christmas works outing, so they do exist but there is very little beyond that. Maybe there are going to be more available once the apprenticeship is completed and we are placed on regional teams, only time will tell.

9a. Would you recommend BT to a friend?


9b. Why?

It is a good job outside of the apprenticeship scheme. It currently has an excellent base pay for trainees which is far beyond what most jobs would provide. The pay rise once the apprenticeship is completed makes for a very good yearly salary that is above the average wage in the country. They is some good job progression available and lots of benefits for employees.

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

Be prepared for a potentially steep learning curve and difficult days/weeks or even months. Be sincere in your desire to fulfil the role you are applying for and be patient with waiting to progress through the recruitment process. It can takes months or even over a year for some to go from the initial application form to starting the role.

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