Business engineer working in an aerospace company dealing with various customers. Working in an office environment with the opportunity to move around the site on different placements and get new work as well as getting introduced to other employees and learning new skills.
I have really enjoyed my first placement in the Weapons team at BAE, and I hope to enjoy my placement in SM&D. Everyone in the team has made me feel really welcomed and settled into the company. My manager, assessor and mentor are all really supportive with the choices I make and encourage me to do my best. I am really enjoying the programme so far, I have got to know the knowledge of the company and what it is about, and the work is very interesting and I always have something to be doing.
As an apprentice I feel very valued at BAE, there are lots of opportunities for the apprentices and show us different career pathways to take. My manager has involved me in campaign work and has got me involved with liaising with key stakeholders to get valuable information.
In my first placement I received a lot of support from my manager, they helped me settle into the company and made me feel very welcomed. They were always encouraging me to try new things and take on new challenges. They were always there to help me if I didn't understand some of the work, but gave me the freedom to look for the answers myself instead of just telling me so then I understood the work. My manager has been supportive when I've had personal issues or work concerns, and has developed me. I have also had a lot of support from my mentor, they have given me advice about career pathways and has shared their experience at the company
The team I am in at the moment is the Supplier Management & Development team. The types of tasks I do on a day-to-day basis include Supplier Intelligence packs, Business Continuity Management and some days I spare time to complete my NVQ work. As this is only my second week in this placement I am trying to learn the basics of what the team does.
As an apprentice I was not given a whole lot of responsibility during my first few months at the company. Because we deal with a lot of customers and the work we do is very important in terms of security and safety, I was only given as much responsibility for work as I felt comfortable with so in that respect it was ideal for me.
I feel like I have gained more confidence, I was very shy when starting the company in September but now I feel comfortable to go and speak to new people. I feel I have developed my team working skills, I have been engaging with key stakeholders and liaising with my team to gather topical information. I have also completed lots of online training, including Intellectual Property, Health and Safety and MAI Inductions. External training that I have completed includes the MAI Procurement Awareness Course and the MAI National Stem Ambassadors Induction Course.
The general atmosphere was positive. We all get along really well and we share personal things in conversations to help get through the day which then allows us to help each other more with work and meetings that we have and ensures I'm more open and feel more confident around my peers too.
I feel that the apprenticeship programme is very well structured, the induction got us apprentices to get to know each other and complete tasks in groups. There is always support from our assessors if we have any problems or concerns, whether they are work related or personal. Our assessors always encourage us to complete different training courses and advise any that they feel will benefit us. I have regular meetings with my assessors and have 12 weekly reviews with my assessor and my manager to see how I am progressing. My assessor always makes sure that my NVQ work is up to date and is there to advise me if I need help completing it.
They invested in me very well as I am currently doing college work towards my NVQ in business and I have also spoken to out of time apprentices who say the company still supports them with degrees and other educational qualifications etc. I am really happy with how much they have invested in me.
It's really appealing to me and although a job is not guaranteed, almost all apprentices (business or technical) get a job. I am hopeful I will also get a job suited to be as well since I have enjoyed all my work so far and I believe the company holds a promising future in my career. There seems to be many benefits working for BAE systems.
If there is a meet up/night out in the local area with colleagues and other employees I work with I am always included and invited/welcome to come along and join in. We occasionally go out for a few drinks together to celebrate a birthday etc. There are a few local pubs we can go in on a Friday afternoon if we finish work at 12 and take the afternoon off on flexi time. It's always good to be able to have a informal chat with your co-workers I think.
I still live at home and I am currently saving to either rent a flat in the local area or possibly a down payment on a house. The local area has some houses and flats for sale that are suitable for all ages and are not too steep either. The town here is also, I'd say, average and not too expensive or really cheap.
There are a few pubs close by which can be good to go too in the summer and for a few drinks on a night. There aren't many clubs however most of my workers are of an older generation and tend to prefer pubs and bars which I do too. Plus they are easier for you to sit down and chat and be able to get closer to each other and friendlier.
There are lots of events that I can attend outside of the company, as I have joined STEM, I will have the chance to go and speak to schools about what I do and try to inspire them to take on an apprenticeship. I can also take part in charities, and volunteer to raise money for different charities. There are lots of company events that I can do, like information night at football clubs to promote the company and persuade people to take on an apprenticeship here at BAE
Placement Year (10 Months+)
Placement Year (10 Months+)
Placement Year (10 Months+)