Graduate Opportunity

Manufacturing and Supply Chain Graduate Leadership Programme


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  • Are you practical, a self-starter, someone who cares about doing things right? 
  • An excellent communicator with a passion for helping people? 
  • Are you fascinated by manufacturing and keen to experience the different roles within a global company? 

If this is you, then apply to the James Walker Graduate Programme!  

We are James Walker

Engineering solutions for critical applications.

Responsibility from Day One 

Participants benefit from three 10-14 month placements within different James Walker manufacturing companies; working across all aspects of manufacturing, placements can include shift management, strategic projects, continuous improvement, quality, logistics, procurement, configuration, production planning and site engineering. Specific roles undertaken in placements are agreed between the company and yourself to ensure we achieve business impact while taking into consideration your chosen interests.  

At each placement, you will be mentored by a senior member of the manufacturing or supply chain leadership team, and work on a project with your own responsibilities. 

First and second placements are usually based at two of our three largest manufacturing centres of excellence in the UK (Cockermouth in Cumbria, Gourock in Scotland, and Bingley in West Yorkshire). Each placement can comprise time working in different departments, for example 6 months in a shift management role followed by 6 months in a Quality role. 

The third placement can also be UK based, however COVID and VISA permitting, we are keen to offer placements at our manufacturing locations outside of the UK. These include, but are not limited to,  Dadra in India, Chicago in the USA, and Antwerp in Belgium. 

Following successful completion of the programme, there is the opportunity to work and lead the business in a choice of geographical locations and to specialise in specific operational roles. We work with you throughout the programme to identify the career path that fits you within the business. 

Development and Training 

As you progress through each placement, you will have accountability for, and will be challenged and mentored to take on, bigger roles and projects. We support this with coaching by senior directors and a comprehensive training programme run with and accredited to the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) through to Level 7 qualification. 

Role specific development is actively supported. For example, to achieve your Chartered Engineer status, engineering graduates benefit from an accredited MPDS scheme with the Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), and we can also sponsor chartership with the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3). Whatever your chosen specialism, we support you to achieve accreditation with institutes and bodies appropriate to your role and career path. 

What we are looking for

Applications are preferred from STEM graduates, qualified in;

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Manufacturing Engineering
  • Mechatronics
  • Business Studies 
  • Or related disciplines 

Candidates must have entitlement to work in the UK, must have/expect to achieve a high class degree (minimum 2.1 or equivalent). Fluency in English is mandatory. Skills in other languages would be advantageous. Unfortunately we are not able to support applicants that require sponsorship for a Visa to work in the UK. 

Key information 

We offer a competitive starting salary, group pension scheme and many benefits.  

Founded 139 years ago, James Walker is an international, privately owned, engineering group. Headquartered in the UK, we work on mission critical sealing applications in partnership with blue chip engineering customers. We develop our own proprietary materials, and we manufacture these into complex high performance seals for critical industrial applications; including off shore wind, nuclear power, hydrogen, seals for oil and gas, COVID vaccine production equipment, and much more.  

Roles typically start in September and October, however we can be flexible regarding start dates. 

We've signed the Gradcracker feedback pledge.

(This means that we will supply feedback if requested after an interview.)


How to Apply

Apply to enclosing an up to date CV together with a Cover Letter. Please state in your application that you are applying to the Manufacturing and Supply Chain programme, when you are seeking to commence employment, your nationality, and your degree discipline together with expected or attained result.  

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Opportunity Overview

  • February 1st, 2022
  • Competitive salary + benefits
  • 2:1 and above
  • Cockermouth (Cumbria), Gourock (Scotland) and Bingley (West Yorkshire)
    (Show map)

Disciplines accepted...

  • Chemical
  • Manufacturing
  • Mechanical
  • Mechatronics

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