Mechanical engineers technicians are in charge of ensuring that different kinds of equipment and machinery operate properly. This covers the design, construction, testing, installation, adjustment, and maintenance of equipment. They may work in manufacturing, electrical, building, or transportation.
Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:
- draw up plans for new ideas, using computer-aided design (CAD) software
- investigate and test ideas to improve existing systems and solve problems
- make new parts
- install and test instruments and machinery
- carry out preventative maintenance
- identify and repair faults
- meet performance and safety targets.
- Starting salaries for an apprentice is £18,000 per year.
- Experienced mechanical engineers can earn up to £40,000 per year.
You will typically work 37 to 42 hours per week working evenings and weekends on shifts.
You could work in a factory or in an office.
Your working environment may be noisy and outdoors some of the time.
You may need to wear protective clothing.
Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice mechanical engineer technician include:
- Level 3 Maintenance and Operations Engineering Technician – Entry requirements for this level include 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship. This qualification takes 36 months to complete.
On a mechanical engineer technician apprenticeship, you’ll learn:
- the ability to use, repair and maintain machines and tools
- knowledge of engineering science and technology
- maths knowledge
- design skills and knowledge
- the ability to work well with your hands
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- the ability to work well with others
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently.
Career path and progression
With experience, you could become a supervisor or project manager, or specialise in areas like CAD design or quality control.
You could also qualify as an engineer by completing a degree in mechanical engineering.