Directors get out and about with apprentices

With United Utilities’ apprentice recruitment attracting a record number of applicants, two of the water company’s directors went out and about to meet current apprentices.

Mike Gauterin, Customer and Technology Director and Tom Lissett, Bioresource and Green Energy Director left their day jobs to spend time getting a greater understanding of apprentice roles and experiences.

Mike visited Abbie McDonnell, a Case Manager apprentice in the Developer Services and Metering Team where he was put to work dealing with an application for a new water connection.

Now in the second year of her apprenticeship, Abbie, joined United Utilities from school and is set to complete her training later this year.

Reflecting on the experience Abbie, 18, from Widnes said: “I’m at the start of my career and it was great to spend time with a director, he shared some good advice about continuing to train and learn throughout my career.”

Mike added: “Our apprentices play an important role in delivering water and wastewater services for seven million people across the North West, they are the future of our business and it is great to take time out to hear directly from them about their experiences.

Meanwhile Tom Lissett and Head of Bioresource Operations John Blackmore visited current and former apprentices at the maintenance workshop in Shell Green, Widnes.

They spent time with first year Field Service Engineer apprentice Guy Hinnigan who was working with a former apprentice to replace key parts in pumping equipment.

Tom said: “After spending time with Guy to find out about his experience so far, it was encouraging to watch him working alongside one of our former apprentices who was happy to share his knowledge. It really demonstrated how much he has learned since becoming a fully-fledged member of the maintenance team. 

“It was also really pleasing to see how engaged Guy was constantly asking pertinent questions and really getting involved, his future looks bright.”

Guy, 20, from Walton in Liverpool added: “I’ve always been interested in engineering so I’m really enjoying the apprenticeship experience – as well as getting the technical training, I get to work alongside former apprentices who are great mentors.”

Since the apprentice recruitment window opened, the company has received double the number of applications than previous years. This year 90 apprentices are available across the region. Recruitment is open until 3rd March and the successful applicants will join the company in September.

For more details about the available roles visit: