- 1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
- 2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
- 3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
- 4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
- 5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
- 6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
- 7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your 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.)
- 9a. Would you recommend National Grid to a friend?
- 9b. Why?
- 10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to National Grid?
I am an apprentice, so i have to shadow experienced craftspersons and take part in various jobs in order to satisfy the requirements on my log book. At times i am also frequently training at the national grid training center in Earking, where we learn skills and develop our knowledge. We are given things like knowledge projects and learning logs, where we log all of the training we have done and showcase our knowledge.
I have learnt new mandatory skills such as first aid, my persons (general safety), but i have also learnt things such as hand skills, LV wiring, brazing/ welding, working at height and various other skills. I have also been attending the city and guilds course where i have been doing my level three engineering, and i have been studying the way the substation equipment works, as well as looking at mathematics of the course and being tested on the topics we have learnt. So far i have learnt about the equipment in our substations, what i will have to do as a qualified crafts person, and how to stay safe in my environment, as i am around HV and LV electricity a lot of the time.
I enjoy my program because i am now used to the team i am working with, they are extremely helpful and show me something new everyday. I'm learning something all the time and although I'm not the fastest learner, i have the resources and people to help me grasp anything i am confused about. Working as an apprentice gives me the opportunity to work my way up and truly absorb the full essence of being around the equipment, and i am never doing the same thing everyday. It meets every beginning expectation i had, and although it is overwhelming at times, is also very rewarding and achievable.
The programme for when we are training at Eakring is timetabled into calendars to make sure we always know what we are doing, and we also have a separate timetable for when we are at site, so we know what job we are doing, who with, etc. If we need any help with anything we can go straight to various people. With so many apprentices who all have their own calendars and things to do it gets a bit hectic, but the planning team keep It as organized as possible.
We are able to go through hierarchy of support when we need any support, and we also have specific people to help us with certain issues. They always make sure that we are aware that they are here for support whenever we need and have various communication lines open for us to contact them on. If we need further assistance they put in place bespoke plans for each of us and we have the opportunity to seek extra help such as tutoring, one to one with an experienced employee or more resources.
Alot. We are given a wealth of information, links, documents and online pdfs that allow us to gain full knowledge on every topic we learn, and we have the national grid websites that hold any relevant information also, so we can pull it out of the system to read whenever we needed. I enjoy my qualifications as the work is explained to me properly and we are given enough time to study it/ revise it, plus more time if we request it.
I feel like the things I am learning in a classroom directly relate to my line of work, for example i am learning things like the functions of substation equipment, and they give me practical examples that i can use on the field if something similar occurs. From what i have learnt so far, i am confident by the end of my qualification i would have learnt all that i needed to know.
They have an annual Christmas dinner at each team within national grid, as a thank you for the years work and a chance to bond with your colleagues. At the training center we have various things such as a gym, lounge/ bar area, games room, running trails, fishing pond, fields and an astro turf pitch. All of these things are available for us to use whenever we need. We also have the chance to join national grid media coverage where we can volunteer to take part in videos, interviews, webinars, talks, etc. to tell people about our experience, or any projects national grid may be working on.
Nation grid boasts some of the best facilities and equipment in the UK, not to mention the salary/ financial incentives is more than most competitors offer. They are focused on who makes national grid work which is us, the people, and strive to make sure we are able to reach our full potential, using the best resources possible and creating an environment we can thrive in. The chance to succeed and progress up the ladder of employment here is very likely and you can also move into different sections of the company if you feel like it is not for you.
For the interview process, as long as you show yourself in the best light and stay confident, that will help put your foot in the door. Don't worry about not knowing everything about the company- that's what you're here to learn! The application process is long but spaced out so everything isn't on top of you. Think out your answers and stay calm through every stage. You're here because you find this type of work exciting and that's what they want! If/ when you get in: - Always ask for help if you are stuck. We are a community here and aim to help our colleagues when needed. -Take all the information that you can get. Knowledge is power, and they have a plethora of information that you can use. Be proactive. Take the leap and ask for things to do, involve yourself in the extra curricular events, and do extra reading/ more reading if you don't fully understand it. -Be organized. There's a lot to keep up with in national grid and in normal life, so make sure you're always planning your next move so you aren't caught out/ to reduce stress. -Have fun! National grid and its employees are amazing, we have amazing facilities and great little extras and this is the start of something great for you. If you get in you've earned it, so enjoy it!
Apprenticeship - Advanced Level (Level 3)
Engineering & Manufacturing