1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My role often entails lots of sensitive work which can be very varied, i can be working on everything from the designing of a product to the prototyping and then manufacture of it, this allows me to follow my own design from start to finish, i can be using more tradition techniques such as milling and turning or use modern CNC and 3D printing and SLA
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
During the apprenticeship i have both built on existing skills through the training we had provided as well as gaining new skills from training courses i have completed additionally to the standard training, this included work such as welding and CNC all the way to working with explosives, this has opened allot of opportunities for myself.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
Since leaving the training center and getting into proper work i have thoroughly enjoyed my work, it is varied and challenging me in new ways to find solutions, moving into my team has been such an improvement over the Qinetiq training center as i enjoy going to work and don't feel like the life has been sucked out of me as i sit doing hours of nothing.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
the program has been fairly well structured however some of the tutors did struggle as a couple of the other tutors left whilst we were in attendance, this left them having to pick up for others, due to this it was difficult but the did pick up the ropes quite well and our mentors at work were extremely helpful.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
dstl as a company havent provided as mush support as i feel they should have, i moved from salisbury to kent for the team i had been placed in and they decided because i decided i wanted a job at the end it was up to me to fund cost for relocation, this seemed unfair but questioning it got me nowhere.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
the training provider was helpful, ::Paul Withers:: one of the tutors went up and beyond to ensure that he still provided the same support whilst we were on placement while also picking up for the training center which was falling apart, thanks to ::paul:: i feel i have been able to gain the skills we desperately needed.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
the qualification is well suited to my role as i often have to carry out mechanical manufacture, this allows me to understand and produce very high quality work quickly and effectively, the importance of this is very high as the work i carry out can have critical deadlines and missing them can be extremely damaging for the teams reputation.
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.)
there is young and new started group which organizes social events called Steps, they have run big days out such as paintball and also run small events like pub quiz nights and meals. They're are also various clubs on the internal network such as cycling and Motorsport, these allow you to meet with others of similar interests.
9a. Would you recommend DSTL to a friend?
there is always new and interesting work and so many different teams and job roles that you are guaranteed to find something which peaks your interests, the pay isnt the best due to being civil servants but the job satisfaction is high as you feel included. the attitude at dstl is very friendly so makes it an enjoyable place to be.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to DSTL?
Pay isnt great so dont expect to become rich, however it is very enjoyable and the job satisfaction is very high, everyone i know enjoys working at dstl. you should ensure to seize all the opportunities you can whilst at dstl as there are so many training courses that you should try and take advantage of
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