Meet our apprentices

Apprentices are the lifeblood of businesses today and Bisley is no exception; we’ve employed and supported apprentices for over 20 years now. To celebrate National Apprentice Week, we met up with some of our apprentices to find out more about their life at Bisley.

First off, we get to know Lois Harris, a third-year engineering apprentice.

Lois works in our Product Development team where she helps to identifying continuous improvements that can be made to our products and manufacturing processes. Earlier this year, Lois was nominated for the Quality Skills Alliance ‘Apprentice of the Year’ award which recognises the excellence and accomplishments of apprentices and their employers. Although she did not win, this certainly highlights her potential.

Why did you choose an apprenticeship rather than attending university?
When I completed Secondary school, I researched university options and engineering degrees. I decided it would be better to obtain practical industry experience. While it’s good to learn the theory, it’s also good to understand the practice so you have the skills to adapt quickly to certain situations.

How do you balance working and studying at the same time?
It can be challenging at times. After working all week, sometimes the last thing you want to do at the weekend is an assignment. However, it’s teaching me important time management skills, as I’m constantly balancing work and academic studies. Learning how to use my time in the best way possible is a great help in the workplace.

What is the best thing about working for Bisley?
It’s such a large company yet everyone is very willing to take time out of their day to provide assistance and share their knowledge. The support I receive from my team is exceptional.

What is the most rewarding thing about your job?
As an apprentice engineer, I find it satisfying that I’m empowered to identify and introduce improvements to the production process which will benefit the company for many years to come. Being able to make a difference, whether big or small and to help people on the shop floor excites me.

What are your most valuable tools at work?
I couldn’t live without my Vernier Calliper; a tool that allows me to take precise measurements, as this is a big part of any engineer’s job. Like everyone else in the company, I rely heavily on my computer. For me, it is essential to create and review line drawings which are required to support the production process.

What is the main skill you will take away from your apprenticeship?
The importance of effective communication has been a big learning point. For me to succeed in my job it is essential to communicate with all levels of employees across the whole company.

How do you relax after work?
I like to play netball for a local team, normally training during the week and playing in matches at weekends. It helps me unwind and make new friends while keeping fit.

If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?
I would be a lion, as they’re very powerful animals.

National Apprentice Week 2017