Early Careers FAQs

Who is eligible for your programmes?

All employees at MBDA are required to hold UK Security Clearance. To gain this clearance you are required to hold a UK passport and to have resided in the UK for the previous 5 years. If your application to MBDA is successful, we'll need to check your eligibility, which means seeing your birth certificate and/or your passport. Security vetting will also be undertaken.

I am a mature student, can I still apply through your early careers schemes?

Yes, there are no age limits on our early careers programmes. The main requirements are that you have the necessary degree qualification and the personal qualities we seek to add value to our business.

I have not yet obtained my degree, can I still apply through your graduate scheme?

Yes, if you are successful at the assessment centre, you will receive a conditional offer, which will be subject to providing evidence of achieving a 2:2.

I applied before but was unsuccessful. Can I apply again?

There is no reason why you can't apply again at any time if you were unsuccessful, as long as you can demonstrate that something within your application has changed. 6 months to a year is a reasonable period over which skills can change and improve, and if you can demonstrate this, we will reconsider your application.

When do applications open?

Our graduate and undergraduate roles go live early September and our apprenticeship roles go live early October.

When do applications close?

Graduate and undergraduate applications close at the end of November and Apprenticeship applications close early January. However, please be aware we may close applications early if we have enough successful candidates, so we recommend applying early.

Can I visit an MBDA site before applying for a role?

No, we currently cannot offer this due to Covid restrictions. However, we work closely with schools and universities to create opportunities for you to speak to current employees and find out more information. 

Can I apply for more than one role?

Yes, you can apply for up to three roles

Will you pay for my expenses if I attend an assessment centre?

New for this year, our assessment centres will be run virtually. We are continuously adapting to new ways of working and this method has plenty of benefits. Virtual assessment centres allow us to adhere to social distancing rules and we appreciate it can be expensive for students to travel so this will reduce costs.

How many people are you recruiting this year?

MBDA recruits over 200 Early Careers members every year.

What support will I receive during the recruitment process?

During the recruitment process, the early careers resourcing team will be available to answer all your queries and support you through the different stages. The best method of contact is via email resourcing@mbda.co.uk

How has MBDA responded to Covid-19?

At MBDA, the well-being of our staff is our priority and we take our collective responsibility to play our part in the fight against COVID-19 very seriously. The majority of our employees started to work from home immediately and most are still doing so. We do recognise that as we go forward, some employees will need to work on site and this will be part of a phased plan.

Following on-going updates to government guidelines and as the national lockdown eases, MBDA are continuing to review the current work arrangements. We have increased health and safety measures in place on all sites to ensure social distancing is adhered to. This includes:

  • One way systems
  • Removal of desks to create more spare
  • Workstation safety measures
  • Barriers
  • Extended available working hours
  • Increased cleaning

Regular communication is sent from leadership teams to all employees to raise employee awareness of the steps being taken to help protect our health, safety and wellbeing and to ensure that everyone understands the organisations obligations and their personal responsibilities.

We also recognise that working from home and being seperated from colleagues, friends and family may have an impact on mental health so our Mental Health First Aiders and Mental Health and Wellbeing Allies are available to all employees. There is also access to our mental health support community and our Employee Assistance Programme.

What hours will I work?

Your contract will require you to work for 37 hours per week. The company operates a flexi-time system, which allows you to vary your start and finish times.

Will I be required to work over-time?

Generally, our early careers members will not be required to work over-time. There may be occasions however, when a specific task or project requires you to work over-time.

What is the dress code?

We do not have a dress code in our offices, however the majority of employees choose to wear standard business dress. In our labs and manufacturing areas, there is a need to wear appropriate clothing, some of which will be provided for you. 

What benefits will I receive as an early careers member?

Early careers members receive the same benefits as all permanent employees. To see the full list, please click here.

Does MBDA provide technology and equipment?

Yes, all employees will receive the necessary equipment for their job role e.g. a laptop.

Will I be doing real work?

Yes, you will be given real responsibility and ownership right from the start. At MBDA you will be working on real projects, unlike schemes in other businesses where you would only be 'shadowing' a worker. This will enable you to gain experience and make a real contribution to the business.

Where will I be working? Will I be required to move?

All of our UK vacancies are based in Stevenage, Bristol or Bolton. Depending on the role, you may be required to be flexible with travel between sites for meetings or move permanently for a role or project. You would be consulted on this and if the move is agreed, you would receive help to do so.

Do I get to choose my placements?

Some of your placements will be set in specific business areas to ensure you gain the best experience. However, you may be able to influence what projects you work on. You may also be able to take an external placement elsewhere in the business or go on secondment to another company.

Are there opportunities to work a secondment?

Yes, you may be able to undertake one placement in an external company. Previous graduate trainees have experienced placements within the MoD and the Royal United Services Institute in London.

What support will I receive during my early careers programme?

Once you have been offered a role, you will be assigned a 'Buddy' who can answer any questions you may have prior to starting and also help you settle in. This is usually someone who is on or has completed a similar scheme.

Each function has a 'Technical Coordinator' who will organise your placements and during each placement you will have a Line Manager.

The early careers learning and development team organise your training programme and will be available for support throughout your scheme.

All early careers members also support each other and reguarly meet for the early careers forums.

Is there opportunities for professional registration?

When you join one of our schemes, you will have the opportunity to follow our accredited professional development programme with the aim of becoming accredited with the most appropiate professional body.

Will MBDA support me if I want to pursue additional qualifications?

MBDA encourages professional development and some of our employees are supported through higher education. Any request for support for further qualifications will be reviewed in the light of the business need, individual requirements and career development.

Does MBDA run any networks or societies I can join?

Yes, MBDA has a wide range of networks available to all employees. Each network runs a variety of events and sends out regular communication, these include Pride at MBDA, Charity Challenge, New Starter Community, Parents & Carers and many more. When you join, you will be provided with information on our networks and how to get involved.

Is there any opportunities to support STEM activities?

Yes, we actively encourage our early careers members to support our outreach and STEM activities. We organise annual events, such as Robot Rumble, where you can mentor school students and support them throughout the competition. We also work closely with universities and schools to create opportunities for our employees to deliver talks and support events e.g. careers fairs.

Does MBDA run any activities outside of work?

Yes, we run a Sports and Social Club at our Stevenage site which offers a variety of planned social events and trips. This includes London theatre shows, Royal Ascot and a variety of day trips. We also have a range of sport teams open to all employees to join, such as football, climbing and yoga.

Is there a page for general FAQs?

Yes, to view our general FAQs please click here.