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Former HETA apprentice and RB Engineer helps trainee technicians secure vital employability skills

27th March 2018

Former HETA (Humberside Engineering Training Association) apprentice and RB Engineer Tom Dooley – is helping young people in Yorkshire and the Humber to follow in his footsteps.

Hull-born Tom decided to pursue an apprenticeship with HETA after leaving sixth form college: “I had an interest in engineering and HETA was, to me, the standout provider in the area. They put me in touch with some of the largest engineering employers in our region, including RB, BP and Total.”

Following a year of practical training with HETA, Tom joined RB as a mechanical engineering apprentice in its Liquids manufacturing department. The Hull-based plant produces global consumer health brands such as Nurofen, Gaviscon, Lemsip and Bonjela.

In his fourth year, Tom was supported by HETA through the completion of his engineering HNC, which allowed him to progress on to RB’s graduate scheme.

Capitalising on this step into management, Tom is now a Maintenance Team Leader for the Liquids processing area, where the bulk products are manufactured. He attributes much of his opportunity for progression and development to HETA’s vigorous recruitment process.

“It is a challenge for companies to tell what a new employee will be like simply from a CV,” explains Tom. “It is difficult to know what they might be capable of, how they are going to interact and integrate with different people.

“I think this is something HETA does really well. They look at all your functional skills, teambuilding capabilities, and observe how you work alongside other people. Knowing first-hand how rigorous this process is, it gives me a lot of confidence in the capabilities of candidates when I now recruit apprentices.

“HETA also comes in and supports our training programmes. They provide a great deal of feedback and are continually ensuring their apprentices are getting what they need. They’ve always got their wellbeing and progression at the forefront of everything they do.”

Currently, over 265,000 skilled entrants are required in the engineering industry annually. Therefore, an apprenticeship in this sector represents an ideal opportunity for young people to join established businesses, where they are afforded accountability and autonomy from day one.

“I think engineering is a great industry to get into,” concludes Tom. “Completing an apprenticeship through HETA opens so many doors. Plus, while you are training, you are in real-world environments, building relevant skills and getting paid for it! It really is an amazing thing to do.”

To find out more about engineering apprenticeship opportunities with industry-leading businesses, visit the HETA website: