Below is a list of our most frequently asked questions (FAQs) - click on the question to reveal the response. If you are unable to find the information you need please call our Recruitment Team on 0207 061 1939 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Advice - Completing the application form
Qualifications - any qualifications you enter on the application form even if they are not required for the vacancy will be checked thoroughly by our background checking provider if you are successful in receiving an offer from National Grid. If any details are found to be incorrect this could lead to the offer being withdrawn. Attained qualifications will be checked at the Assessment Centre and verified by the Resourcing team and third parties that they are original documents.
This also applies to the education and employment details that are submitted on the application form. If the work experienced you have obtained is through an Employment Agency please ensure you provide us with their name.
Supporting documents - we would encourage you to upload any supporting documents on the application system. This could be transcript of exam results, qualification certificates etc.
There is also an option to upload a CV if you have one already prepared.
Advice - Time to complete the application form
Time to complete the application - we anticipate that the application process could take you between one and two hours to complete so please make sure to allocate sufficient time and a quiet place to work. You will have the facility to save each page and to return to the application form to complete on separate occasions. However the last stage of the application process when you submit the full application and undertake the first part of the screening will need to be completed in one sitting.
Advice - Email Communication
Email Communication - all communication during the application process will be made via email, please ensure that you enter your email address correctly. Please also be aware of any filters or firewalls that may prevent you from receiving emails, and remember to check your Spam or Junk email folders regularly. National Grid or its agents, subsidiary companies, Alliance Partners and any contracted data processors cannot be held responsible for lost emails. We would advise you to use an email address that you are able to access regularly and do so from the time you apply. Please be aware of our Assessment Events which can be viewed on our website
Advice - Situational Judgement Test
The Situational Judgement Test will present you with various situations you could encounter during your time on the programme. We are looking for you to identify what is the most effective and what is the least effective response to each situation.
You should spend the same amount of time identifying the least effective response as you would for the most effective response. Both areas are awarded an equal level of scoring.
Please make sure you sit the test in one session and that you select a quiet area to do this away from any distractions.
This test has been developed and validated by individuals who are currently performing well on our development programmes and within their permanent roles.
The questions on the Situational Judgement Test have been designed for the Advanced Apprenticeship Programme and are not relevant for a different career profile any support that you may be given by a friend or family member could seriously impact the final result of this test.
We do not expect you to have any prior knowledge or experience in this kind of role. We are assessing how you judge a situation and whether you can recognise the most effective or least effective reaction to each of the given situations.
There are no trick answers and you can assume that the information in the responses is correct and that you would undertake the activities you suggest. Each situation should be considered on its own merits; the situations do not link or relate to each other
Advice - Telephone Motivational Discussion
The telephone motivational discussion will take approximately 20 minutes and you should ensure you take the call in a quiet environment, free from any distractions or interruptions. The purpose of the motivational discussion is to ensure you are fully motivated to join the programme and have a real interest in the end role. We also need to know that you understand what will be required and the commitment you will need to make during the training and beyond.
To help you prepare try to fully understand the role you are applying for and increase your knowledge about National Grid. Think about what really interests you about the programme and what abilities you feel you have for the role. Try and relax during the discussion and make sure you give us as much relevant information as possible
Advice - How to prepare for an Assessment Centre
Preparation is all-important. Be sure to think about your previous experiences (work, education, extra curricular activities etc.) and what you have learned and gained from each of those. It's always good to have a variety of examples at hand. Remember, we are assessing you against the competencies! It's also essential to do some research into the business - and you can find lots of information about us here on the website. During the selection process - stay calm, be yourself, don't try to second guess what we are looking for or act out of character otherwise you will only mask your natural strengths and qualities. Whether it's an interview question or a group exercise, listen to what's being asked of you as this will enable you to demonstrate the skills you have.
Advice - Documents at Assessment Centre
Documents at Assessment Centre - you will be expected to provide originals of your qualifications and right to work in the UK without Company sponsorship documentation at the Assessment Centre. Please be proactive and ensure that this information is current and available in the event that you are successful in reaching an Assessment Centre. If the qualifications are not obtained then please provide an original latest summary of results or a covering letter from your Tutor. Some documentation can take up to 8 weeks to obtain new originals. Attained qualifications will be checked at the Assessment Centre and verified by the Resourcing team and third parties that they are original documents
Advice - Competency Based Interview
This is an interview where specific questions are asked about past experiences this will help us to gather evidence to measure capability in a competence and is designed to find out if candidates have got the initial qualities we are looking for in an Apprentice.
Advice - Pre-employment checks
In order to provide an offer of employment in writing we will require the following information from you.
• Your original valid UK Passport or full A4 birth certificate and proof of your National Insurance number
• Your full UK Car Driving licence (both card and paper) if you have one
• Your original GCSE Certificate(s) and/or equivalents
To speed up the process it is advisable to bring these original documents along to the Assessment Centre for us to verify and check that they are originals.
Once an offer of employment is made you will then be registered for background checking and you will need to complete a medical questionnaire and undertake a drug and alcohol test.
Verifile our background checking company will then conduct a Criminal Record Check together with a 5 year career, education and address check.
All information collected by Verifile as part of the background checking process will be compared against your original application form. It is therefore imperative that all information but particularly the education and employment details are accurate. If the work experienced you have obtained is through an Employment Agency please ensure you provide us with their name. Please be aware that if you have entered additional qualifications on the application form that are not relevant to the role, these qualifications will be checked as well and if they are found to be incorrect this could lead to the offer being withdrawn.
All candidates must have successfully completed all of the pre-employment checks prior to physically starting with National Grid. Once an offer has been made to you we ask that you are very proactive in registering and completing the paperwork
Start date of the Apprenticeship Programme?
Sucessful candidates will start training in September and November 2013
Equivalent Qualifications outside the UK - if you have studied outside of the UK and believe that you have equivalent qualifications, please can you verify this with NARIC: email@example.com. Office hours: Monday to Friday 09:00 - 17:00 in advance of submitting your application. Equivalent Qualifications inside the UK - if you have obtained equivalent qualifications in the UK, please verify this with Ofqual (Office of the Qualifications and Examinations Regulator) through their website: http://www.ofqual.gov.uk/qualifications-assessments/89-articles/147-equivalent-qualifications in advance of submitting your application.
What is the selection process?
After meeting our initial programme requirements and successful completion of the Situational Judgement Test, we then go through each submitted application against our set criteria. If you get through this stage, there is a telephone motivational discussion which will explore your motivations for the role. And then, the final step is an Assessment Centre. You will be assessed against our competencies at each stage of your application, so please be prepared
What happens at an Apprentice Assessment Centre?
Our assessment centres are made up of a competency based interview, a health and safety exercise, a technical test, and a manual dexterity test. For the substation and overhead lines roles where working at heights is essential a climbing assessment will also be required. A colour blind assessment will take place to ensure you can distinguish between different colours. This is critical for the electrical based roles. The assessment centres are designed to find out if candidates have the initial qualities National Grid are looking for.
On day 1 of the assessment centre, there will be a welcome presentation followed by some time to get to know other candidates and National Grid staff over dinner.
On day 2, you will complete a competency based interview, a health and safety exercise, a technical test, a colour blind test and a manual dexterity test. There will be a climbing assessment for Overhead Lines and Substation vacancies.
Competencies assessed at Assessment Centre
We assess for competencies such as Team Working, Organisation and Planning, Effective Communication, Problem Solving and Decision Making in conjuction with Health & Safety and Practical Skills.
Travel expenses paid for attending an Assessment Centre
We are happy to cover your travel expenses to and from the Assessment Centre to a maximum of £100 return trip i.e. standard class rail fare, coach fares, (fuel costs @ 12p per mile) and taxi fares from the nearest railway station i.e. Newark, Mansfield or Nottingham (unless approval has been obtained in writing in advance of the date of travel). Please provide receipts where appropriate so that we can reimburse you
Dress code at Assessment Centres?
During the first day of the Assessment Centre the dress code is casual, so clothing such as smart jeans, T-shirts or similar. For the second day you should wear business dress, such as a suit or jacket, or similar.
You will be provided with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for the manual dexterity text and the climb for the Substation and Overhead Line roles.
Will National Grid provide me with a Certificate of Sponsorship?
National Grid is unable to provide sponsorship for this role as it does not meet the sponsorship criteria set by the UK Border Agency under the Points Based System. You must have the right to work in the UK without sponsorship to be considered
Do I need to have a UK car driving licence?
Candidates must hold a valid UK car driving licence within twelve months after joining the Advanced Apprenticeship Programme or within twelve months of their 17th birthday whichever is the sooner
Can I apply for the programme again?
If you have applied in previous years, and been unsuccessful, you can apply again although it would be helpful if you could now show some additional experience that would support your case.
National Grid's Core Values
Our Core Values define the way in which National Grid expects us to act both as individuals and in teams to deliver our goal of being the world’s premier network utility. National Grid has developed its brand identity within the company’s Framework for Responsible Business.
Approved by the National Grid Executive and underpinned by employee feedback, the brand identity draws together our core values and brand promise. Our brand promise is ‘to carry out all our activities safely, reliably, responsibly and efficiently’. Our Core Values support the brand promise and are set out below.
Respect others and value their diversity
Take ownership for driving performance
Demonstrate integrity and openness in all relationships
Work as one team, one National Grid
Do I have to be clean shaven?
This is only required for some roles in Gas Distribution Operations that require the wearing of a breathing apparatus. This is because an effective seal on the breathing apparatus can only be achieved when the skin is clean shaven. We are looking forward to a technical solution becoming available that would effectively remove the safety issue and, thus, allow us to remove this requirement.
National Grid and its subsidiaries, is committed to providing equality of opportunity for all. In compliance with Company policy and to enable us to effectively monitor our recruitment practices; we need to gather the following information in respect to gender, ethnic minority, nationality, sexual orientation and disability.
When you submit your completed form, this diversity information will be saved separately from your main application. It will not be used in any way as part of the selection process. This information is voluntary, if you do not wish to answer a question please choose “I prefer not to state”
Employee Resource Groups
We value and respect the strengths and differences among our employees, customers and communities. As a way of fostering inclusion and diversity at National Grid, we have a number of employee resource groups.
These groups are established to provide a mutually beneficial relationship for our company and our employees. They contribute to an inclusive environment by providing opportunities for employees to network with each other, senior management, to attain career building skills, and to provide a better understanding of our company and our business.