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The UK Power Networks graduate scheme

UK Power Networks’ Graduate Engineering Programme is designed to help recruits develop their skills and provides stepping stones towards become a Chartered Engineer (CEng).

The UK Power Networks graduates “The programme will add to your all-round understanding of engineering and our various business practices while, at the same time, giving you first-hand experience,” says the Graduate Programme Consultant. “As well as giving you an insight into all aspects of our company, we’ll make sure that you get all the support you need from our professional skills team.

“You will gain valuable work experience - not to mention the opportunities you need to gain the professional qualifications to become a future leader in your field. What’s more, we’ll provide you with a Chartered Engineer mentor, as well as membership to the IET.”

What the UKPN graduate engineering programme entails

The programme begins with an eight-week induction, where grads are given an in-depth insight into the business. Then there are two phases to the scheme. During the first year grads attend a variety of courses and undertake rotational placements in business areas. Courses include training on the company’s three main crafts: jointing, fitting, working on overhead lines, high voltage (HV) switching and distribution network awareness.

“The rotational placements provide a platform to meet and spend time with some of the most senior managers in the company. Everyone is willing to share their knowledge and experiences to accelerate our learning to be better engineers,” says graduate engineer Daniel Moloney.

“From the start the people in my office have taken me out on site and explained the jobs they are doing, encouraged me to participate, put forward my ideas, ask questions, and think for myself,” continues colleague Rebecca Smith.

In the second year, they progress into their first supported role in the business. During this time they continue to be part of the graduate programme and receive all of the mentoring and support they need.

Over the course of the programme, the graduates are reviewed on a quarterly basis to monitor progress and development. They also have access to opportunities such as attending external industry conferences and site visits.

“A highlight for me was attending the Westminster Energy Forum,” notes another graduate, John (Ioannis) Moutafidis. “While not giving anything clearly applicable on the day-to-day job, it was a great lesson on the energy industry as a whole on a strategic/executive level. I value it greatly.”

At the end of the two years, graduates then have the choice to continue working in their current area or apply to other suitable opportunities across the business.

What UKPN looks for in an employee

When considering graduate scheme applications, the company looks for educational qualifications, work experience and an eagerness to work at UKPN.

When it comes to advice, the Graduate Programme Consultant recommends preparation.

“In order to stand out my biggest tip is to spend time on the online application and prepare for the assessment centres,” they note.

Find out more about UK Power Network’s IET-accredited graduate engineering programme.