‘I joined Jaguar Land Rover in November 2020 and was given 6 weeks of intensive training starting immediately so I could begin working on live projects independently as soon as possible. It was great to get involved straight away and I was made to feel incredibly welcome by the whole department.
After my training I was assigned a mentor, a lead surface engineer, to help guide me through the departmental processes and support me in my early meetings and projects. Having a mentor has really helped my transition into live project work without being thrown in the deep end and provides me with exceptional support when needed.
A surprising part of the graduate programme was the focus on personal development outside of my role. I was impressed to find Jaguar Land Rover’s dedication to increase personal skills such as confidence, communication and wellbeing within their graduates. New to the 2020 graduate scheme was the introduction of PERS (Professional Excellence Recording System), in which graduates record their personal development progress quarterly. This is then reviewed with their managers and mentors who provide valuable personal feedback and can help provide opportunities to improve in areas which may not be progressing as quickly as others.
At the end of my first year, PERS has helped me identify a lack of experience in managing the inputs of others within group projects. This was then raised in my quarterly meeting with my manager who has created the opportunity for me to gain more experience in this area going forward to my second year.
Alongside PERS, graduates have weekly interactive lessons on a range of personal development topics through ‘Ashorne Hill’. These sessions fit in around my work and help with skills such as presenting, self-awareness and project management. One of my highlights of the programme are the two-day classroom sessions run at the end of each term. These provide graduates with a chance to discuss and collaborate the terms topics with their cohort and instructors in the beautiful setting of Ashorne Hill in Leamington Spa.
The programme has been invaluable as my role incorporates continuously presenting ideas and proposals. My confidence has increased, I am much more efficient with my verbal and written communication, and more comfortable with hosting meetings which were 3 of the main topics from the first year.
Outside of formal training I have found that I can ask anyone within my team for help and they will happily take time out of their day to answer my questions and point me in the right direction. Jaguar Land Rover is truly an incredibly supportive environment in which to work and learn and I can’t recommend the graduate scheme enough. It will bring out the best in you.’