Process review and Optimisation of A350 engineering processes.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I enjoyed the work I was doing as the project I worked on was close to my passions and interests. Spending my working days inside aircraft wings was a really unique and exciting experience! I did however struggle with the resistive nature of manufacturing as a whole, and the lack of degree knowledge that was needed in the projects.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
My colleagues enjoyed sharing their jobs and roles with me and explaining their day to day tasks. However, I often found that they did not have enough time for me, as they were constantly in and out of meetings. This, I believe, is very common in the manufacturing world namely in the engineering departments and is highly dependent on whether your manager can find the time to aid you.
I was lucky to have been left to manage my own projects which was very forgiving and allowed me to determine my own path in my role.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I felt that my manager always was too busy to support me in my role. On the whole through different departments, I found that in manufacturing it is difficult to balance time effectively with constant meetings and with running production. This did not encourage me, however this could have been very dependent on the manager as a person rather than on the job, although it was reflected a lot through to other departments.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
At the beginning I was learning the role, which fluctuated in and out of being busy. This is expected in any job to begin with. Further through the year as I began to take on other projects and taking on more responsibility, I became very busy and the days and weeks passed very quickly. I also feel this is highly dependent on how much work you make for yourself.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I started out supporting other members in their projects until I could understand the internal processes and thereafter, I was given full responsibility of my work.
I was left to project manage all four of the projects and manage the stakeholders along with the support of my manager for when I was in need of help.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I developed a lot of project management skills with a strong focus on stakeholder management. I felt this has helped me manage my time and extra curricular around my studies much better as well as taught me about prioritising work.
Sadly, I did not get the chance to partake in any training during my placement year.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office i worked in had a very friendly and open environment. All the employees were very welcoming and friendly with each other in the office. Between the two shifts I saw that there was no change in the vibrant atmosphere in the office and I felt welcomed to the team upon my arrival and throughout the year.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
I believe that I was the first intern that was welcomed into the department so they were not very sure in exactly the processes that were required. I think for the following student a lot more understanding has been collected. The HR department were very good with sending out forms before my arrival and were very efficient.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
The company did not put me through any training as they did not feel I needed the training for the role I had. Plenty of other interns had the opportunity to partake in training as they were found to have needed that training for their roles, and so a business case was found.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Sports and Social Club
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Airbus as a whole has many different opportunities and a role at the Filton site is very appealing as a career. I am tempted to return to the Broughton site (as well) for the travel prospects that lie within the multiple job roles there and within the graduate program on offer. I do fear that the lack of understanding for interns will cause many to not want to return for the graduate program.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The students were very sociable amongst each other. There are monthly social meet ups, both sober and otherwise, for graduates, apprentices and interns which was available to all those under the early careers body. This society was run by students in the early careers department with little intervention from managers.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Although both Chester and Bristol and Stevenage are rather expensive venues (all Airbus UK Sites), I feel as students the city atmospheres provided in these areas were what students are looking for to keep busy and to find entertainment. It is possible to find a cheaper accommodation in a quieter area if required.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nightlife in North Wales is not very active but most younger, and early careers, employees lived in the near cities and shared accommodation together. Chester has a fair few bars and night clubs and just enough for the year placement we were there for. A train or cab ride away is Liverpool which is meant to be one of the best night out locations in the UK.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Work offered a lot of social events through the early careers community for socialising. The venue is located near to a retail park.
These is also an Airbus Broughton Football team that is attached to Airbus, which many interns joined. Other sporting events were hosted at the local subsidised gym on site.