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Engineering Apprenticeships Guide

Introduction To Engineering Apprenticeships

Do you like hands on work, operating and designing machinery; and do you like finding solutions to problems? If you think you are this type of person then a career in engineering via Engineering Apprenticeships should really suit you. If you thought studying full time at university for an engineering degree was the only route into engineering jobs and careers, then this article should give you something to think about.

Apprenticeships are here to stay and are a viable route into exciting and successful careers in various specialist fields. Not everyone can go to - or wants to go to - university on a full time basis, so, if you just want to get stuck in, start learning on the job, gain nationally recognised qualifications and earn while you learn in a particular field of engineering, Engineering Apprenticeships are an ideal way to kickstart your career!


Which Companies Offer Engineering Apprenticeships?

Check out below a wide range of companies offering engineering apprenticeships. Even if the application window isn't open, be sure to keep an eye out for when applications open by signing up for job alerts on our site.

Royal Mail

United Kingdom

36-48 months Engineering Apprenticeship

Royal Mail apprentices are among the highest performing in engineering disciplines in the country.

This apprenticeship will develop a complex blend of technical skills and behaviours across engineering disciplines including electrical, electronic and mechanical, while building a rounded foundation of knowledge of engineering and maintenance to underpin your development.

5 GCSE's graded C or above, including maths, English and science, are required for the apprenticeship which leads to a Mechatronics Trailblazer standard NVQ Level 3 in Engineering Operations and membership with the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET).



Looking to develop your skills? Travel the world? Make new friends? Whoever you are and whatever you want to do, an Army apprenticeship can help you get there.

As a Top 100 Apprentice Employer, we have over 8,000 apprentices passing their training with us each year, in roles including Engineering and IT.

Atomic Weapons Establishment


4 Year Nuclear Engineering Degree Apprenticeship

Help protect the safety and security of the nation, use world-class technology and learn from industry-leading experts.

Spend the first 18 months at the Skills Academy - AWE’s own apprentice training centre – to learn all the basic skills needed for your trade. Then you’ll take part in a series of on-site placements, to put what you’ve learned into practice and further your development, culminating in either a BEng in Nuclear Engineering with specialist units, or BSc in Nuclear Science, all whilst being paid.

Entry requirements for this Level 6 Apprenticeship typically include 5 GCSE's graded C or above, including English, maths and science, and 240 UCAS points or a relevant Level 3 apprenticeship.

Rolls Royce

United Kingdom

3 year Engineering Apprenticeships

Rolls Royce have been working with apprentices for over 100 years and have around 600 apprentices around the UK. With a choice of modern practical apprenticeships, practical advanced apprenticeships and higher apprenticeships, there are routes into engineering for a wide range of GCSE or A-Level grades.

Engineering apprenticeships are available at lots of Rolls Royce sites around the UK.

Mars Chocolate UK


4 Year Engineering Apprenticeship

Deadline: 28th February

On an engineering apprenticeship with Mars, you’ll earn real money from day one, while learning how to make their world-famous products and use their state-of-the-art machinery. Over the course of your apprenticeship, you’ll get to take part in training courses and team-building events, as well as being given real responsibility. And at the end of your apprenticeship, you could find yourself in any number of different roles. Put simply, your future will be wide open.

To rise to the challenge, you’ll need five good GCSEs, including Maths at grade B or 5-6 along with English and a Science grade A-C or 4-9.

GlaxoSmithKline plc

Maidenhead, Worthing, Sligo, Montrose

4 Year Advanced Engineering Apprenticeship

Our multi-skilled Engineering apprenticeship programme is designed to create the engineers of the future. As an Engineering apprentice, you will have the opportunity to develop mechanical, electrical & instrumentation or control & automation skills.

Study towards nationally recognised qualifications while gaining valuable, paid work experience. All engineering apprentices start on an Advanced apprenticeship, studying towards a level 3 NVQ, and work towards a Higher apprenticeship in Engineering - and if you show the qualities we are looking for you may be offered the opportunity to go on to study for an HND or degree in Engineering.


UK wide

3 Year Engineering Apprenticeship

The Otis Apprenticeship in Engineering is a dynamic and comprehensive learning programme for GCSE qualified individuals who are passionate about developing a career in Engineering.

5 good GCSE's are required for the scheme which includes on the job training and work experience as well as a good annual salary.

Volkswagen Group

The Volkswagen Advanced Apprenticeship Programme is designed to train and develop apprentices to keep pace with advancing technology and high levels of customer service. The Programme provides apprentices with an exciting and challenging opportunity to receive formal qualifications through extensive product training whilst in full-time employment.

FCO Services

Milton Keynes

36 months

Our technical apprenticeship won’t just see you earning, learning and building a career – it might just take you around the world too. Over three years you’ll build your technical skills and gain core qualifications with a mix of college and on-the-job training. As you progress, you’ll spend more time on live projects, including the chance to work overseas.

Severn Trent


2 - 4 years

At Severn Trent, we bring clean water to over eight million people, every day. Together, we’re delivering and caring for the world’s most precious resource. We’re a fluid organisation – the challenges we face are always changing, and we’re changing to meet them. From harnessing the power of digital technology to finding safer, more efficient ways to save water, we’re building a network that’s ready for the 21st century. As an Apprentice, you’ll be at the heart of that transformation.Wherever your talents lie – whether you’re an inventor, engineer or wildlife expert – we’ve got a central role for you to play.

How Do Engineering Apprenticeships Vary?
If maths, science and IT have always been subjects at school or at home that have piqued your interest and got your imagination racing, then Apprenticeships in Engineering are going to suit you down to the ground. Of course, engineering is a huge and varied sector and, as an engineer, you could be working in a whole variety of roles.

And ladies, we’d just like to point out that over 90% of the people currently doing Engineering Apprenticeships are male. Let’s start to address that balance, shall we? Apprenticeships, including Engineering Apprenticeships, are there for all with the desire and the ability!

We would love to make this a little, neat and tidy list of all the different types of Apprenticeships in Engineering that exist, but, do you know what? There are just so many types of Apprenticeships in Engineeringout there.

This is a world of true innovation where the imagination works together with your technical skills and there are countless industries that require those types of specialised skills. If an industry requires that skill then, chances are, there is a specialised Engineering Apprenticeship to go with it.

It’s often said that engineering is the backbone of the British economy - well can you imagine a world without cars, aviation, machinery to keep manufacturing plants running, a world of homes without white goods such as refrigerators and washing machines, vacuum cleaners and heating or cooling systems?

From Intermediate Apprenticeships in Engineering up to Higher Engineering Apprenticeships, whatever type of role you are working in, you will be part of an enormous team of people that keeps Britain ticking.

Within each sector there are various, tailored Engineering Apprenticeships you could do, but, for now, let’s just take a look at the vast range of sectors you could work in:
  • Aerospace Engineering Apprenticeships, Aeronautical Engineering Apprenticeships, Aircraft Engineering Apprenticeships - if it flies, there’s an Engineering Apprenticeship to go with it.
  • Automotive Engineering Apprenticeships - Most things on wheels: from Car Engineering Apprenticeships, buses, lorries, vans, coaches… You get the picture.
  • Electrical Engineering Apprenticeships - And where do we start with this one? There are oodles of Electrical Engineering Apprenticeships out there!
  • Marine Engineering Apprenticeships - If it’s all things that float (and submerge) that take your fancy...
  • Processing & Manufacturing - Someone has to design and maintain all that machinery that makes big plants and factories tick. Mechanical Engineering Apprenticeships could see you working in this industry.
  • Rail - Another aspect of the transport industry. Trains, trams, undergrounds - from Railway Engineering Apprenticeships to Apprenticeships in Electrical Engineering. There’s a lot of crossover in industries where different types of engineering are concerned.
  • Telecom and Communications - Imagine Apprenticeships where you are designing, creating and maintaining systems that keep people in touch in a variety of ways.
  • Civil Engineering Apprenticeships - These types of Apprenticeships in Engineering would see you working in the construction industry, not just with physical buildings but also communicating with people and assessing the impact of those buildings on communities and landscapes. This can be anything from homes to bridges to canals and dams. A huge sector of the engineering world.
Wow, you can see the scope here for future engineering jobs and careers can’t you? Which of those types of Apprenticeships in Engineering takes your fancy?
What Is Involved With Apprenticeships In Engineering?
As you can see from the list above, there are just so many types of Engineering Apprenticeships out there for you to choose from - wherever you believe your strengths and interests lie.

Whichever type of Engineering Apprenticeships you choose, there will be hands one, on the job training and mentoring as well as periods of ‘classroom’ time where you will enhance your skills in the theory side of the industry. Throughout your Apprenticeships, your mentor will help you identify your strengths so that you can choose the most suitable pathway for future engineering jobs and careers.
Intermediate Level Engineering Apprenticeships
Again, it depends on the type of Engineering Apprenticeship you decide to undertake, but, as a general rule of thumb, the Intermediate Engineering Apprenticeships take around 2 years to complete.

And, generally, successful completion of Intermediate Engineering Apprenticeships will earn you:
  • Functional Skills Maths and English Level 1 (and sometimes Level 2), if this hasn’t already been achieved.
  • Level 2 BTEC First Certificate in Engineering (or equivalent).
  • Level 2 NVQ Work Based Engineering.
From this position, if you want to progress your career in engineering jobs, you can move on to Advanced Engineering Apprenticeships where you can really start to specialise in your chosen field.
Advanced Level Apprenticeships In Engineering
Advanced Engineering Apprenticeships mean you will still be learning on the job and also doing off the job training, too, where you can really hone in on your skills. Advanced Apprenticeships in Engineering can also be Design Engineering Apprenticeships. In the engineering industry, your Advanced Apprenticeships can take around 4 years to complete - this is the training programme that is designed to create Britain’s engineers of the future.

Do you think you have what it takes? If so, successful completion of Advanced Engineering Apprenticeships will mean you are awarded NVQ Level 3 in your chosen field - and, as we are dealing with the engineering sector here, you can be sure the skills you have learnt in your Advanced Apprenticeships in Engineering are in very high demand.
Higher Level Engineering Apprenticeships
Are you ready to go to degree level? Engineering really is a sector where you can have a fantastically rewarding career both financially and for your own personal reward. Whatever role or field you are specialising in, you are providing a service to people on a multitude of levels.

When you do Higher Engineering Apprenticeships, you will be developing skills whereby you will become a higher technician or senior engineer - and, if you want to, you can take this as far as degree level, afterwards. Higher Engineering Apprenticeships can take 3-4 years to complete.

Necessary experience and qualifications for a Higher Engineering Apprenticeship are usually progression from the Advanced Engineering Apprenticeships or at least two A-Levels in the STEM subjects: Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics. Some Higher Engineering Apprenticeship Programmes might take into account your previous work experience, too, if you don’t have these qualifications. You will need to be 18 years old or above to start Higher Apprenticeships In Advanced Manufacturing Engineering.

Depending on the type of Apprenticeships in Engineering you choose, successful completion of Higher Engineering Apprenticeships can see you awarded with a degree or similar professional qualifications that are recognised nationally.
Apply For Engineering Apprenticeships In The UK
So, if the STEM subjects are your thing or you have a genuine interest in any sector of the engineering world, what are you waiting for? This area of the British economy really needs your skills - you are in high demand - and this is also a field where your Engineering Apprenticeships can offer great job satisfaction.

Apply for any of the best engineering apprenticeships available in your area below now...
Frequently Asked Questions

What GCSE's do I need for an engineering apprenticeship?

This varies due to the apprenticeship level and the business but having GCSEs in Maths and English is typically a requirement. Be sure to check on the application form what the requirements are.


What A Levels do I need for an engineering apprenticeship?

A Level requirements vary depending on apprenticeship level and the business, but having A Levels in Maths and Physics are always well received by recruiters.


What sectors can I do an engineering apprenticeship in?

Nearly every sector requires engineers and offers apprenticeships, from aerospace, electrical civil and travel so your options are far and wide.


What level engineering apprenticeships can I do?

For apprenticeships there are four levels, which are Intermediate, Advanced, Higher and Degree.


Is an engineering apprenticeship better than going to university?

Both apprenticeships and university are great choices to start a career in engineering so it is down to preference. Of course with an apprenticeship you start earning straight away, so be sure to weigh up your options.

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