The Met Office's Exeter office illuminated at night

Building my career with the Met Office

1. What is your background and how did you get into STEM?

When I was at school, I never really considered a career in STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics). But I had an underlying passion for anything to do with building, and I did a woodworking-based GCSE. When I was considering my options for university, I stumbled upon a building surveying course that appealed to me. So, I went to an applicant day, and four years later, I’m a building surveying graduate working with the Met Office.

2. Why did you apply to join the Met Office and what do you do with us?

I didn’t realise the Met Office offered industrial placements until I was researching opportunities when I was at university. My role within the technical team in property management during my placement year involved ensuring our buildings were compliant with legislation and regulation, as well as surveying for defects and providing technical knowledge. The excellent training opportunities available from the Met Office enabled me to develop personally and professionally, while working alongside incredibly knowledgeable people. I had great opportunities to visit our offices in Aberdeen and Lerwick, which also gave me the chance to explore two places I wouldn’t otherwise have seen.

After my placement year, I was offered a place on the Met Office Graduates Scheme. The scheme allows graduates to develop their skills and learn even more about the Met Office by working in different areas of the organisation. It can be tailored towards individual career aspirations, and there is the possibility of securing a permanent role at the end of the scheme. During my first two months, I've supported the construction of new radars and identified repair and maintenance requirements within our buildings to ensure we stay compliant with regulations. I've also researched the relationship between radon levels and atmospheric pressure to better protect our staff in high-risk areas. 

3. What difference do you make in your role?

My team looks after the built environment of the Met Office and the estate on which we work, ensuring we can continue to operate and help people to stay safe and thrive. I was proud to be involved in the creation of collaboration and quiet areas within our HQ building to accommodate different ways of working.

4. Why would you recommend working with the Met Office?

Moving from university to the working world can be exciting and scary. But the Met Office has made the transition as smooth as possible and supported me through it. While there is a lot of expertise and different skills within the organisation, I feel the Met Office really cares about everyone individually. I know there is always someone available to help me if I have a problem or want to have a chat.

I’ve also appreciated other benefits of working with the Met Office, including flexible working and generous holiday allowance as well as discounted retail shopping and healthcare plans. Starting my career at the Met Office is one of the best decisions I ever made, and it’s a great place to work.

This blog was published in November 2023

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