A Week in the Workplace: Work Experience at Slaters Electricals

Slaters Electricals has played host to Amy Rafferty this week on her work experience. Amy has worked throughout the business and in this article she explains about her ambitions for her future career and her week working at Slaters.

My name is Amy Rafferty, I am 17 years old and studying for A Levels in Maths, Further Maths, Chemistry and Physics. I have always had a strong interest in engineering, maths and computer science, and plan to go on to University in 2018 to study some form of engineering degree, focusing on either electrical or software engineering. Before I started my work experience my view on the electrical industry was fairly limited – I knew basics, but I didn’t realise the amount of specialist companies that existed and the amount of actual specific applications of electrical engineering, and the importance of each one.

SLATERS ELECTRICALS LTD:

Slaters Electricals is an electrical engineering company that specialises in HV & LV transformers and switchgear, and they have a very impressive collection of equipment in storage, including new and refurbished transformers and switchgear for purchase and hire, as well as the UK’s largest stock of electrical spares. Their wide range of stock means that they can satisfy most customer needs rather quickly, and they take pride in their equipment being of high standards and lasting for extended periods of time.

WHY WORK EXPERIENCE?

I wanted to do some work experience in engineering to help with the application process when it came to choosing my options for University. I contacted a STEM company who had organised work experience for young people in the past, and once I had told them my interests they provided me with a list of possible companies so that I could do my own research. Slaters was the company that mostly tailored to my interests – electrical engineering – and the convenient location sealed the choice for me. There was a brief interviewing process, where everyone was extremely friendly, and while I had only been expecting a couple of days of limited work experience I was given the opportunity to take a week, and be shown in detail each part of the company and the processes behind each area.

MY WEEK AT SLATERS ELECTRICALS:

Electrical TestingThe week started with a Health and Safety Audit, and while I was being shown around the company and the shop floor I took part in some routine audits on some of the equipment they had there. I found out about the in depth processes that go into running the business and the extent to which the employees take it seriously, while being very impressed at the actual scale.

I was included in the Electrical Testing and Injection Testing of some relays which was definitely a learning experience, and I was provided with lots of information to take away with me that will definitely help me in the future. I was also given the opportunity to draw and edit some CAD Drawings and Wiring Drawings, which personally I found to be the highlight of the week. I was CAD Drawingusing knowledge I already had, and I definitely improved this knowledge during the week.

The actual drawing process, though it took a long time, was something that came naturally to me and I really enjoyed the experience. All of the work and information I had been given throughout the week was mine to keep once the experience was over, and I think that it will come in really handy in the future, especially at University.

 

WHAT HAVE I LEARNED FROM THIS EXPERIENCE?

Wiring Diagram RelayThe week overall in my experience was extremely interesting, and an amazing opportunity that I am thankful for. I know it will definitely help me when applying to Universities and for possible jobs in the future.

The people at Slaters went out of their way to help me and give me the best possible experience, which I appreciate. The experience has definitely helped me to decide what I want to do in the future in terms of what type of engineering career I want. I have gained valuable skills in CAD Drawing, as well as a lot of knowledge that I would not have been able to access from my school studies. I have definitely gained an appreciation for the work that goes into a company, as well as the importance of the work that electrical engineering companies, including Slaters, do.

My perspective on the electrical industry hasn’t exactly changed from this experience, as it has remained positive, but now I definitely have a lot more information, experience and appreciation for it. This week has definitely solidified my interest in the industry and I am excited for the future, although I do think there needs to be a lot more women in the engineering industry in general.