Early Careers, Graduate, Learning and Development, Manufacturing, Manufacturing Engineering, People

‘The support I receive is instrumental in helping me achieve my goals’

What position did you start in and what is your position now? Please describe your current responsibilities. 

I started on the Graduate Program at JLR as a Facilities Engineer, where I played a crucial role within the Global Manufacturing Engineering – Facilities Team. In this position, I contributed to the global manufacturing strategy, assessed the feasibility of new facilities and processes, managed projects for cost, quality, and timing, and supported the introduction of new facilities, materials, and vehicle programs at the JLR’s Solihull site. My responsibilities included collaborating with stakeholders, developing layout solutions, managing contractors, health and safety, operational risk management, environmental innovation, and compliance reporting. I also led New Equipment Procurement Teams and tracked project-based KPIs regularly.

Are you involved in any other projects / networks? If so, please describe what they are and what your contributions are. 

Yes, I am actively engaged in multiple projects and networks that contribute to my professional development and the broader engineering community.

Firstly, I serve as a Manufacturing Graduate Lead, where I play a pivotal role in overseeing and guiding the development of Graduate professionals within the manufacturing department. This involves mentoring and providing insights to help them navigate their early careers successfully.

Additionally, I am a mentor for the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) professional registration, offering guidance and support to individuals seeking professional recognition in their areas of expertise.

Lastly, I contribute to the engineering community by actively participating in and supporting Early Careers events. These events serve as platforms to share knowledge, foster networking opportunities, and inspire the next generation of engineers and professionals.

What do you like about working here?

Working at JLR is a truly enriching experience that I find immensely rewarding. One aspect that stands out for me is the innovative and collaborative work environment fostered by the company. JLR places a strong emphasis on pushing the boundaries of automotive technology, encouraging colleagues to think creatively and contribute to cutting-edge advancements in the industry. The commitment to sustainability and the development of electric and hybrid vehicles aligns with my passion for environmentally conscious practices, making my work at JLR feel purposeful. Moreover, the company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion creates a workplace culture that values different perspectives and backgrounds, fostering a dynamic and supportive atmosphere. The opportunities for professional growth and the chance to be part of a renowned brand known for its commitment to excellence make working at JLR an exciting and fulfilling journey.

What are your career aspirations?

My career aspirations revolve around continuous growth, both professionally and personally. I am keen on advancing my expertise in engineering, taking on challenging projects, and assuming leadership roles that contribute to the success of the organisation. In terms of learning and development, I am fortunate to be part of a department and work under a management team that values and prioritises team growth. The support I receive is instrumental in helping me achieve my goals. Regular development conversations, constructive feedback, and opportunities for skill enhancement are actively encouraged.

Additionally, the company invests in various training programs and resources that align with my career trajectory, facilitating my learning journey. This support not only enhances my current skill set but also enables me to stay ahead in a rapidly evolving professional landscape. Overall, the backing from my management and department significantly contributes to my confidence in realising my career aspirations.

Describe your team / department, and what makes it stand out from our competition? 

Our Manufacturing team and Industrial Operations department are characterised by a unique blend of diverse talents, a collaborative spirit, and a relentless commitment to innovation that sets us apart from our competition. Comprised of individuals with varied expertise and backgrounds, our team brings a rich tapestry of skills to the table, fostering a culture of creativity and problem-solving. What makes us stand out is our agility and adaptability to industry trends and technological advancements. We pride ourselves on a dynamic approach to challenges, constantly seeking novel solutions that push the boundaries of what’s possible. Moreover, our emphasis on open communication and a supportive work environment creates a sense of camaraderie that enhances productivity and morale. This cohesion translates into efficient collaboration on projects, enabling us to deliver high-quality outcomes consistently. In essence, it is the combination of our diverse talents, innovative mindset, and collaborative ethos that distinguishes our team and department, positioning us as leaders in the competitive landscape.

Tell us 3 interesting facts about yourself.

Firstly, I am an avid traveller with a deep appreciation for cultural exploration. Having visited more than ten countries on three different continents, I thrive on immersing myself in new environments, trying local cuisines, and connecting with people from different backgrounds.

Secondly, beyond my professional pursuits, I am deeply involved in bodybuilding, finding solace and inspiration in this expressive outlet. It not only provides balance to my life but also fuels my innovative thinking in unexpected ways.

Lastly, I am a lifelong learner and am currently engrossed in programmes, whether it be mastering a new language or delving into a niche field of study. These facets of my life contribute to a well-rounded perspective and an eagerness to embrace new challenges and opportunities.

What hints and tips can you share with the potential candidates who are going through the application / interview process? 

For candidates navigating the application and interview process, my advice is to thoroughly research JLR and understand its values, mission, and culture. Tailoring your application to demonstrate how your skills align with JLR’s goals. During the interview, be prepared to showcase not only your technical competencies but also your ability to adapt and collaborate. Share specific examples from your past experiences that highlight your problem-solving skills and accomplishments. Additionally, ask questions about JLR and the role you’re applying for, to demonstrate your genuine interest and initiative. Confidence is crucial, but so is humility – be open to discussing areas for growth and how you actively seek improvement. These steps can make a lasting impression and set you apart when going through the application/interview process.

Autonomous, Culture and Values, Digital, Diversity & Inclusion, Featured, Home Page, Learning and Development, People, Research, Shannon, Shannon Life, Software, Technology, Top Story, Who We Are

Shape the Future of Automotive Technology

Exciting Job Opportunities at JLR Shannon: Shape the Future of Automotive Technology!

Welcome to our special Q&A session, where we delve into the experiences and exciting journey of a Software Engineering Manager (Chapter Lead) – Clodagh Daly. In this blog interview, we’ll gain a glimpse into Clodagh’s life at JLR Shannon, current responsibilities, involvement in various projects and networks, and her career aspirations.

From leading and empowering a diverse team of engineers to developing software engineering practices, fostering a supportive environment together with the rest of the leadership teams, and championing Women in Engineering. She brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her role.

Join us as we explore her life at JLR Shannon below:

Q: What position did you start in and what is your position now? Please describe your current responsibilities. ?

Software Engineering Manager (Chapter Lead).

In my role, I am primarily a People Manager and leader of Engineers.  As a former Software Engineer, it is crucial to ensure that people’s development and learning is fostered in a continuous cycle, technology is evolving at such a rapid pace, we need to ensure our Engineers are at the cutting edge in their skills development.  This offers support to the organisation and enables the engineers to operate at the highest levels, empowering them to grow.  It is our responsibility to assist them to develop into the leaders of the future, both from a technological stand point but also as key drivers of our business and industry. 

Enabling a positive environment where they are supported and empowered to develop is key.  Regular touchpoints with me, reviewing how they are performing in their Agile team, identifying performance opportunities for them, to build their technical skills, develop their internal brand in JLR and for them to gain tangible experiences in our technologies and functions is really important. 

My team is diverse in their roles, experience levels, skills and technology stacks.  It is challenging to ensure people are given the required time and support for them to succeed.  This role is vital to them being successful in their abilities to deliver our quality products, so it is a great pleasure to watch them flourish in their career progression.  Without our Engineers, we have no products to sell. 

Q: Are you involved in any other projects / networks? If so, please describe what they are and what your contributions are. 

As a Chapter lead, we are presently putting shape to our Software Engineering Chapter, where individuals can form part of a cohesive collective of likeminded Software Engineers.  Our aims, are to provide guidance, define processes, align on technology and tooling, offering a community across the Software landscape in JLR.  This enables us to have a platform cross-functionally within our business where we can make strategic changes,  bringing ‘Best In Class’ strategies to the fore in our Software community.  This benefits both the Engineers but also the Organisation and provides our team members a cohesive space for them to collaborate, drive forward their suggestions, making meaningful strides forward in our technical evolution! 

I am also a member of the SHE++ Society where we champion all things – Women in Engineering in JLR Shannon.  Our aim is to foster an environment where women are supported, facilitating Mentorship talks, career development discussions.  We also want to promote the idea of diversity in the Engineering and Tech divisions, giving back to the community is very important to us, so we have conducted lots of Primary School visits, promoting Women in Technology and Engineering roles and encouraging the school girls, aged 11-12, to pursue roles in STEAM in the future.  This is a highly rewarding society and is key to breaking the bias of women in technology and engineering for the future!  Encouraging them at a young age to recognise these options as very positive careers for Women!

Q: What do you like about working here?

JLR is a truly inspiring place to work.  Our products are just sublime!  Breathtakingly beautiful, the epitome of luxury, all while offering the robust off road capabilities that we in JLR are synonymous with.  Our site in Shannon has Agile Squads that are driving forward the most critical technological advancements.  We have teams representing the ADAS group, Data Analytics and Machine Learning, DevOps, along with a host of other Onboard and Offboard capabilities.  There is something here for everyone, all tech stacks are present here. Variety is boundless.

The culture in Shannon is one which is really unique and that is down is no small measure to the approach taken from the top leaders across the site.  They ensure they are giving their time to everyone; they operate an open door policy; they are vastly knowledgeable in our products and are always willing to offer guidance, advice and energy to all of the sites various communities.  It has a nurturing vibe here, nobody’s questions are ever silenced and if there is something that is suggested within the site, it is welcomed, and you are given the latitude to go and bring it to fruition.

Q: What are your career aspirations? Do you feel that you get the necessary support from your management / department to help achieve your learning & development goal? 

As a relative new comer to the Automotive industry, I am learning every day. Our team in JLR Shannon are working on the most ground-breaking technology available and the opportunities to learn and grow are continually extended to everyone.  Each month we have 3 hours of protected time, where we can avail of training for our growth and development.  We have access to internal training platforms which houses a multitude of Automotive training and technology materials. JLR have also invested in making both PluralSight and Udemy Learning platforms available to our team members.  These are globally recognised suites of learning, demonstrating JLR’s commitment to growing their team members skills and investing in their development.

In JLR Shannon we are solving technically uncertain challenges daily, having the great pleasure to create the next generation of vehicles that can do things no-one has even considered possible.

My experiences in Shannon have been inspiring.  The culture and atmosphere here is like a family, it is warm, welcoming and growth focused.  Our team members are passionate about what we do and that is driven from the Senior Leaders on site.  Autonomy in your work is the way of life here, accountable but without fear to fail, there is zero tolerance for blame here, culturally.  Blame is actively discouraged in JLR Shannon, as without failure you cannot hope to innovate.  In our Research & Development focused Software Centre our goal is to harness the creativity of our engineering minds not stifle them, mine included.

Q: Describe your team / department, and what makes it stand out from our competition? 

Our proud team are known as the Onboard Enablers, what a great name!  We are responsible for enabling all of the connections and interfaces within the vehicle, bringing cohesion to all of the technology in our cars.  This provides our squads the opportunity to get first touch on new components and software, we lead, we don’t follow, breaking new ground is what we do, everyday!   By engaging directly with our suppliers and building the key partnerships, we are at the cutting edge of innovation, having the greatest opportunities to bring our market-leading new features to life, delighting our customers! 

Q: Tell us 3 interesting facts about yourself.

I have loved cars since I was very small – my brother and I used to play ever increasingly complex games of identifying cars while on family journeys.  My aim is to get my hands on an extremely rare,  2 seater Citroen DS convertible -innovative for its time, classically designed and remains a thing of beauty 20+ years later!   I just need to win the lotto first.

Hobbies, well I am a thrill seeker, Great White Cage Diving, bungy, helicopter flying amongst a few things, but parenthood has put the brakes on that for the time being.  I also am a massive DIY enthusiast, doing wood work courses and metal work courses so I could make things I wanted for my home!  My husband is a patient man.

Travel, I have travelled extensively I would say, backpacking, no 5-star luxury for me!   India, Thailand, Cambodia, UAE, Hong Kong, Maldives, New Zealand, Peru, Mozambique, South Africa, Dutch Antilles, the US, to name a few and of course all through Europe.  This is a passion!  The more obscure the location the better.  I backpacked as I found you really get to know a country when you are closest to the people, hostel life often will tell you more than any 5* will. 

Q: What hints and tips can you share with the potential candidates who are going through the application / interview process? 

First tip is to APPLY!  You do not even need to come from an Automotive industry to be able to make an impact in our Organisation!  Find me on Linked In or check out our Careers Page!

Secondly, and importantly; believe in yourself and your technology skills.  Outline your interest in JLR Vehicles and how you can contribute to the Automotive industry.  We are always looking for people who demonstrate drive, commitment to excellence and passion for what they do!  The rest you can learn here with us.

Apply now and be part of our dynamic team in Shannon: Shannon | Main Portal (pocketrecruiter.com)

Apprentice, Body Engineering, Early Careers, Engineering, Learning and Development, People, Who We Are

Life of a Jaguar Land Rover Apprentice, What You Need to Know.

You’re probably thinking of going to university. Or maybe you’re about to leave the family nest, in search of education and an adventure. I certainly know that feeling. I’m sure you’re thinking about how to put your best foot forward as you step out into the big bad world, how to get the best out of your chosen career and how to best reach your potential.

Let me introduce myself, and I’ll share how I’m trying to do just that myself. My name is Callum, aged 20, I joined David Game College in 2017, I studied A-level maths and as I grew into the year, I found the concept of taking out enormous loans to further my education less and less enticing. In addition, through the variety of voluntary projects I’ve been involved in, I discovered how satisfying it is to work with your hands; building, making, creating and decided I wanted to continue learning in this way.

I began investigating apprenticeships in early October 2017.

An apprenticeship, in case you don’t know, is a course of study you can take under the employment of a business or institution, where you work and study for recognised qualifications. You’ll receive on-the-job training for your chosen career path, and get paid for your time. In addition to gaining an income and the associated responsibilities of this (paying for your board and lodgings for one) I found there were many, many benefits to studying this way, a debt-free degree being foremost among them. For example, on the scheme I’ve been accepted on (Vehicle Engineering with Jaguar Land Rover) I’ll receive a BEng in Applied Engineering from the University of Warwick (one of the Russell group Universities, which has a fantastic engineering and maths department) saving me up to £80,000 over 4 years. Best of all, an Apprenticeship gives you the opportunity to learn, grow, mature and take responsibility in a working environment in a way that going to university the “normal way” just does not.

I started my apprenticeship on the 3rd of September, commencing with an induction week at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry. Here I received excellent motivational speeches, inspirational lessons on the separate design languages of Jaguar and Land Rover, and had lots of opportunities to network and make friends with my newfound workmates. I received my uniform, which I am to wear to college and work, and met my line manager, who will be responsible for my development and training for the next 6 years.

We also had two very special presentations, one by James Barclay (the Team Director of Jaguar Panasonic Racing Team) and another by the Chief Program Engineer of the brand new Jaguar I-PACE, Jaguars first All-Electric Performance SUV. I then spent the week beginning the 10th of September at Warwickshire Trident College, completing assessments, learning about the company ethos and endeavouring to create an open and inclusive learning environment.

I started my studies in September, and have so far done 3 week blocks of study in Hand Fitting and Electronics. In hand fitting I learned metalwork (the very basics of modern engineering) and in electronics I learned basic soldering techniques and how to build working electronic circuits and logic gates. The work I’m completing right now is of a difficulty between GCSE and A-Level. Next week I’ll be starting an academic block, with Material Sciences, Maths, Physics, Automotive Engineering & Electrical Engineering all on the menu.

As I write this, I’m having a week’s work experience at Gaydon (where I’ll be based as of next year) working with the ‘home department’ I’ve been assigned to. I’ve linked up with my manager and the rest of the team, I’m working with current apprentices and graduates. I get the opportunity to experience what I’ll be doing during and after my apprenticeship, learning from experienced professionals, many of whom were apprentices and so understand what it’s like starting out at a large company. I know that they’re all around to help me if I need it, as we’re all part of a team, each individual is important at Jaguar Land Rover. Using our skills and talents, to create fantastic products for our customers.

Jaguar Land Rover Degree Apprentice.

Considering an apprenticeship?

We want to transform the automotive landscape and shape the future of mobility – so our early careers training programmes are the route to an inspired career. Each is designed to give you the ideal mix of on-the-job training and focused, classroom-based learning.

Find out more

Apprentice, Body Engineering, Early Careers, Engineering, Learning and Development, People, Who We Are

Degree Apprenticeship Vs University

When I told people that I wasn’t going to university, I was met with surprise and confusion. “But you have to go to uni…” Etc. Etc. This quickly changed to intrigue when I then said that I would be getting a degree and that I would be paid to do it. University was somewhat of a pre-requisite at the school I attended. You did your GCSE’s and then your A-levels and then you went to university. It’s just what everyone did. (Well, it was either that or you could take a year out to “find yourself” before inevitably taking up a place at university the year after). I always liked to be different, to take an alternative path.

There was a lot of thought that went into deciding to go for a degree apprentice route and many factors which I had to consider. First of all however, it was about finding the opportunity that was right for me. I was in a fortunate position and I knew what I wanted to do. In that respect, the degree apprentice route was perfect for me. I knew I wanted to be an engineer, I enjoyed both maths and physics and the most important thing, I was passionate about STEM. Passion is the most important asset you can have when applying to a degree apprenticeship course, grades are good but at the end of the day, they are only letters on a piece of paper. What will really make you stand out is your experience, having evidence to back up your passion. In my case, I was an Arkwright scholar, a Teen tech National winner, a Big Bang Fair National Winner and a Land Rover in school’s World Finalist. Investing your time into enrichment schemes like these is a great way of getting valuable experience. (I’ll write a future blog going into more depth on how I got the apprenticeship – spoiler: I was rejected the first time).

Many companies offer degree level apprenticeships and many more will do in the future, due to the government’s apprenticeship levy. Whilst this is generally good news, I would be wary of new schemes and research each one properly. For me, the company was absolutely key. JLR is a fantastic forward thinking company which values it’s employees as it’s most valuable asset. After less than a week here, it already feels like home.

Whilst researching each apprenticeship on offer, the most important consideration was the institution that the degree was being offered by. While this may not be important for many people, it was essential for me that the partner university was one that I would consider applying to through UCAS. This narrowed down the options significantly as I could only find 2 schemes which met my criteria. Jaguar Land Rover and Dyson. Both schemes work closely with Warwick University, currently a top 10 university. I successfully applied to both schemes, which were both amazing opportunities in their own right. The choice between the 2 companies were personal decisions based on the location and loyalty to JLR through the Land Rover in schools challenge I am still a part of. Either would have been an honour to be part of and I realise how lucky I was to have the task of making that decision. I also successfully applied to 5 universities through UCAS for mechanical engineering (Warwick, Durham, Leeds, Bath and Bristol), so why did I reject all 5 for a degree apprenticeship?

With degree apprenticeships, all of the hard work is done prior to the offer with tests and interviews being part of the recruitment process. This means for me, to attend Warwick university through UCAS I would need to achieve A*A*A in my a level examinations. To join the Jaguar Land Rover course the requirement was two C’s or above. This offer took some of the pressure off my A level studies and allowed me to spend more time on more STEM enrichment courses as this is what I enjoyed and was passionate about. I was however, determined to still get the best grades I could and scored A*A*A*A.

Secondly, the experience of working on real life projects whilst learning was very appealing. This was made especially clear at the Warwick University open day, ironically enough. Whilst talking to one of the mechanical engineering students there, he told me that he spends his summers on graduate placement schemes at JLR. His words to me were that he learnt more on those placements than the whole time he was at university – and I knew from then that I had to get on to the degree apprenticeship course. The opportunities and skills I could learn were

Probably the most attractive offering from the degree apprenticeship schemes is being paid to learn. And the massive advantage over university is that I won’t have £60k worth of debt – I will be in the black. The salaries offered are very generous and I will try very hard to not be smug in front of my university going friends.

Having been in the education system for the majority of my life, I also felt that the degree apprenticeship would be an opportunity to become an adult and to be treated as one. I want to be responsible for real life projects and make a real difference and that’s something a degree apprenticeship can offer me.

Opting for a degree apprenticeship is definitely the harder option over university. Balancing the work load with school studies will be intense and it will be difficult. But that’s what it’s all about and I can’t wait. University has many advantages over degree apprenticeships. The scope of courses they offer is huge and if you don’t know what career you want to go into then university is the best place to find out. It’s also a great place for personal development with lots of off term time, it can be a place to find and develop new hobbies. Compared with the average of 28 days annual leave on a degree apprenticeship scheme, university clearly allows more time for extra curricular activities.

With both options, there is an opportunity to move away from home, to meet new people and to grow. The degree apprenticeship was right for me for all the above reasons. It might just be right for you too.

Have you seen our degree apprenticeships?

As a degree apprentice, you’ll help us by preparing for your future and developing the skills to build everyone else’s. You’ll combine learning at the prestigious University of Warwick with a real job working on active projects at Jaguar Land Rover.

Find out more

Learning and Development

Our Great Line Manager Programme

It provides our line managers with the tips, tools and techniques to drive engagement, performance, and ambition within both their teams and the wider global organisation.

It addresses three key areas of management behaviour:

  • How well do you know yourself as a leader?
  • How well you can inspire others to perform?
  • How well you interact with and have conversations with people each and every day?

Over 2,000 line managers across the Jaguar Land Rover global organisation have experienced the Great Line Manager programme.  We have reached as far as Brazil, the USA, South Africa and India. It is a truly global programme, which connects line managers from around the world on our social learning app – a place to share great advice and a brilliant way to learn from each other.

The programme has recently been nominated for a number of awards by the Training Journal:

  • Best Leadership Development Programme
  • Best Private/Commercial Programme
  • Business Culture Learning Award
  • Business Culture International award categories

We will continue to review and refine the programme to ensure the best possible experience for our organisation.