Graduate Engineer (Electrical Discipline)

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We welcome applications from every part of the community, and we don’t discriminate against any gender identity. We’re especially interested to hear from underrepresented groups in the DfT such as gender diverse, BAME, LGBT+, and disabled candidates.

Have you recently graduated or are on course to graduate with a degree in an automotive engineering discipline with an aim to becoming a Chartered Engineer?

• Are you looking for the next exciting step in your career and to work on challenging projects?

If this sounds like you we have a fantastic opportunity waiting here at the Vehicle Certification Agency (VCA). We are pleased to offer the VCA Graduate Scheme, an exciting training programme involving a structured series of placements supported by a full timetable of formal and on-the-job training. We would love to build an enthusiastic student into a talented engineer armed with first-class knowledge and experience, giving you the chance to work with and learn from experts in the industry.

Our office locations are in Bristol and Nuneaton and there will be a business requirement for you to spend time in your designated office. This will be discussed further with your line manager on appointment. You will also be required to travel to different offices on occasion for work requirements and to visit key stakeholders. Overseas travel will also be an option so the successful candidate must have a willingness to travel in the role.

Job description

The VCA Graduate Scheme is a two-year training scheme leading to a permanent engineering position within one of two sections within the Agency. This will be as a Type Approval Engineer in European Operations or as a Regulatory Engineer in the Regulatory and Technology Group.

At present there is one role available in the Regulatory and Technology Group for a final position as a Regulatory Engineer.

This year VCA will be obtaining IET accreditation for the scheme and reflects our increasing focus on automated and connected vehicle systems. Our intent is that graduates will follow the same structured approach to their development as our existing graduate programme, tailored to an electrical discipline.

Following the completion of your first two years of development, subject to satisfactory performance, you will move into a permanent position within VCA.


VCA graduates undertake a structured series of placements and projects, supported by a full timetable of formal and on-the-job training. The first two years will be aimed to help you find out about all the different areas within VCA to ensure you have a broad understanding of the organisation. You will also gain first-hand experience of the automotive industry through external placements with our scheme partners.

Highlights of the scheme include:

  • Going on placements with the various parts of VCA and the Department for Transport where you will be involved in running technical projects, in a variety of engineering, as well as understanding how legislation is produced and the impact it has on the agencies. There is also the opportunity to have a placement in one of VCA’s overseas offices
  • Spending time on an industry placement, that may be a heavy vehicle or car manufacturers - providing you with an understanding of how vehicles are designed, how they are manufactured, and what systems are put in place to make sure they meet legislation
  • You will experience vehicle testing laboratories – learning how vehicles are tested before they enter production, how they are instrumented, and how the work of VCA affects the running of these tests
  • A significant amount of training will be available to provide you with the skills that you need to further develop yourself

Support will be given throughout the entire training period, both professionally and from an IET perspective. After approximately 4-5 years you should be ready to apply as a Chartered Engineer. During this time there will be further travel, both UK and overseas.


Vehicle Certification Agency

The Vehicle Certification Agency is an executive agency of the United Kingdom Department for Transport, and is the UK's type approval authority.

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