More than three dozen eager graduates are now bedding in at Thames Water.
The 37 graduates were whittled down from more than 1,000 applicants, with a range of expertise and ages.
They also come from a diverse range of backgrounds, and this year’s cohort also includes the most amount of female graduates to enter the business with 19 enrolling and some entering operational roles.
Jackie Kidd, head of talent, culture and engagement, said: “I’m delighted to welcome our new graduates into the Thames Water family. Our graduate pipeline is one that welcomes a diverse range of individuals and encourages new talent into our industry.
“I’m pleased to hear they have had such a successful first week in their induction which has allowed them to have an insight as to how our business operates and why they have joined at such a fantastic time.”
During the induction week the cohort took part in several activities and attended talks with several members of the senior leadership team, including chief executive Steve Robertson. He spoke about how important customers are to the company, both now and in the future, and how the emphasis of everything Thames Water does is for the benefit of the customers. He also encouraged the graduates to work together and be innovative in their thinking.
They also received a talk from Janet Burr on the company’s vision and values, completed a ‘Our Thames Vision’ session, had a question and answer session with chief financial officer Brandon Rennet, received advice from the head of the water network Tim McMahon, himself a former graduate, plus other senior speakers from business units.
During the activities, the graduates completed the water network challenge, the build a bike challenge which was then donated to charities, and took part in a question and answer session with other graduates.
Stephanie Richards, a graduate who has joined the strategy and regulation team, said: “One thing I didn’t expect from my graduate induction was to be taught how to build a bike from scratch which ultimately had to pass a safety MOT.
“I think that exercise alone taught me something very valuable about Thames Water, that it has many critical components that need to be fitted together by different people in order to make something that works."
Emma Novak, from HR, led the graduate induction and said she thought they would bed in to their new roles quickly. She said: “It was an absolute pleasure to organise and spend the week with the new graduates, and to make a start on introducing them to all that our great company has to offer. Meeting all of the potential leaders of our business was wonderful, and also to see such passion and readiness in each of the individuals.
“There was a lot of strong and positive feedback from their first week, with many sharing how excited and ready they now feel to go out and make a start in their roles within the business.
“I’d like to take this opportunity on behalf of my team to wish all the new graduates good luck as they make a start on their careers.”