Mechanical Engineering Industrial Placement Student

by GSK

Best Student Employer


  • Skills
  • Responsibilities
  • Support & Guidance
  • Culture
  • Your Impressions


  • 1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis.
  • Working within the engineering team responsible for the upkeep and improvement of production lines as well as being partly based within the Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) team. The role involved daily collation and analysis of OEE data followed by presentation of this data to representatives from various departments. Actions were then taken by the appropriate team based on data presented. Attendance of morning meetings with the team to set out key issues for the day and to update on progress of ongoing work. Most days would include the creation, presentation, management and implementation of changes and required documentation in some form, this would involve discussions with relevant members of the engineering team for the change as well as other functions within the company and occasionally discussions with the Original equipment manufacturer (OEM) or other external suppliers. Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software would be used most days to track projects and update. Each week project meetings would be had with the OEM as well as internally within the engineering team to track progress and plan future projects, these often influenced what work would be undertaken within the following week. The use of excel, PowerApps or PowerBI was also required most weeks to trend data or create tools for both engineering and production departments.


  • 2. Have you learnt any new skills, or developed your existing skills?
  • Within the role I developed my presenting skills, through daily meetings as well as ad hoc presentations and discussions with various internal departments. I have also developed by software skills within enterprise resource planning software as well as Excel, powerApps and PowerBI. My problem solving and time management skills have also been improved through much of the work done, as well as the ability to make critical decisions when needed and to prioritise work based on engineering and production need.

  • How would you rate the training provided during your experience?
  • 4/5

  • How would you rate your development of industry-specific skills during the experience?
  • 4/5

  • How would you rate your development of personal / soft skills during the experience?
  • 5/5

  • Please rate how these skills have helped you in your career development
  • 3/5


  • 3. Were you given much responsibility during your placement / internship?
  • Yes, after initial training I was given responsibility for the creation of change documentation for presentation to various internal departments as well as the management of this within enterprise resource planning software. I progressed my own changes and carried these out on production lines, gathering all relevant approvals and resources required. Within the Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) team I led all of the OEE data collection and presentation for the last six months of my placement.

  • Please rate how meaningful the work you were doing was
  • 4/5

    Support & Guidance

  • 4. How much support and guidance did you receive during your placement / internship?
  • I received a good amount of support and guidance, from both my line manager as well as other engineers within the department that I was working closely with. There was support from all other functions across the site when I had to interact with them, especially during the first few months of placement. There was patience for my work and delays that would occur due to my relative inexperience of processes and any questions were freely answered with detail.

  • How would you rate the support and guidance from your line manager?
  • 5/5

  • How would you rate the support and guidance from the wider team?
  • 5/5


  • 5. What was the company culture and general atmosphere like?
  • The company culture was good, it felt a good place to work and the atmosphere within the department, office and site as a whole was positive. COVID did contribute to some uncertainty and more delays and downtime within the work but these were all handled well and everyone stepped up. There were charity initiatives happening throughout the year still as well as sports opportunities, I played 6 a side football through work for the majority of the year when restrictions allowed. There was adequate space on site to socialise within breaks with members of the team as well as with the other industrial placement students on site.

  • How would you rate the inclusiveness of the culture?
  • 5/5

  • How would you rate the social opportunities?
  • 3/5

  • How would you rate the diversity initiatives?
  • 4/5

  • How would you rate the charity, sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives?
  • 3/5

    Your Impressions

  • 6. To what extent did you enjoy your placement / internship?
  • I thoroughly enjoyed my placement. The work was, for the most part, engaging and interesting, giving me a good experience of the working culture as well as specifics of an engineering function. The team were good, carrying out their work to the highest standard and always had time to assist in training myself up with the work that I was doing. The company culture was positive and support for employees through COVID seemed good. The job did meet my expectations for its support of myself as a student and I would consider going back if the right role arose.

  • Please rate your level of enjoyment on your placement / internship
  • 4/5

  • Please rate how your experience met your expectations
  • 4/5

  • Please rate the future employment prospects at GSK
  • 4/5

  • 7. Would you recommend GSK to a friend?
  • Yes

  • 8. What advice would you give to others applying to GSK
  • Always have an open mind to the work being asked of you, get involved in projects across departments if these are offered to you. As a placement student you have a unique opportunity to ask questions of many people and gain insights into careers and career paths. When applying, be yourself and be alert within any interviews or assessment centres, let other speak and defer to others where neccessary. You are there to sell yourself but teamwork is a large part of work at GSK, it won't be about you most of the time. Always have a couple of questions for the interviewer as well, either about their own career or GSK, to show further interest

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Placement Year (10 Months+)

Mechanical Engineering

East of England

June 2021

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