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  1. RFlower
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    RFlower EF Member

    Location:
    West Midlands
    Hello Everyone,

    I am new in the electrical industry but I have an interview next week and would appreciate tips from you.

    The job is going to be in a highly automated environment

    What types of questions should I expect ?
    I know something about motors, inverters, contactors, sensors, PLC.

    Does anyone know the type of questions they ask in places like Sainsburys, Ocado, Tesco customer fulfilment centres?

    I appreciate your help.

    Thanks
     
  2. darkwood
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    darkwood It's all about Gmes Staff Member Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    Welcome to the forum :)
     
  3. Pete999
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    Pete999 Trusted Advisor

    Top Poster Of Month

    Location:
    Northampton

    1 What position are you being interviewed for?
    2 Are you an Adult trainee or a younger version?
    3 I can't comment on what questions they may ask, because a)I don't have any experience of the company and b)what the job is you are looking for.
    4 I have experience of interviewing trainees but that was for a Civil Service department, (technical)
    The only advice I could give would be to look smart, interested in the company, at the introduction stage, skate the panel by the hand and thank them for seeing you, Oh and turn your Mobile OFF, some insight into the position you are applying for may help others give you advice, good luck.
     
  4. RFlower
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    RFlower EF Member

    Location:
    West Midlands
    Thanks for your reply.
    I am applying for a multi skilled role. I am an adult with little experience in this field but I'm going to try my very best. I have a lot of qualifications including HND in Electrical ENG, Siemens PLC, 17th Edition and many more.

    Thanks again.
    Appreciate your help.
     
  5. TJ Anderson
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    TJ Anderson Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    Derby
    Hi. You state Siemens PLC qual. Do you have much industry hands on PLC and automation experience? Is it advertised as a role with training?
     
  6. Adam W
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    Adam W Electrician's Arms

    Location:
    Bournemouth
    Since it's an interview the standard interview rules apply - As Pete says turn your phone off, be there a little bit early, wear a suit, take a copy of your CV with you, give a good firm handshake and make eye contact etc. Have some questions written down ready to ask, or to tick off. Have them in front of you so they can see you've taken some time to prepare.
    If it's for a big company like a supermarket they might have someone there from HR who will want to ask standard stock interview questions like "can you describe a time you used teamwork/exceeded customers' expectations/when one of your ideas was implemented?

    They might ask some technical questions such as what would you do in a given situation, but the way I see it you can't really prepare for those - the point of those would be to test what you know.

    Good luck!
     
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  7. RFlower
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    RFlower EF Member

    Location:
    West Midlands
    The role will be to fault find and fix things on this huge automated distribution centre. Although they require you to have PLC skills, I don't think they would make a technician ( which I am) modify any of the programs as this centre I hear is the biggest automated Centre in Europe. I only have Siemens S7 level 1 programing with no industry experience ( but I don't tell em dat).

    I just want to know what technical questions to expect.

    I went on an interview before and all they asked about was contactors, motors and encoders. I didn't get the job anyway but I learned from the mistakes I made.

    So what technical questions do I look out for?

    Cheers.
     
  8. RFlower
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    RFlower EF Member

    Location:
    West Midlands
    Cheers.
    I'll look for examples of situations like you stated and find answers to them before I turn up.

    Thanks
     
  9. SteveG
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    SteveG EF Member

    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    I have interviewed many hopefuls in the automation sector. If your CV has made it through to the interview stage - that is a good start.
    I could write a list of unbelievable CV's that could fill these pages.
    There's an old adage that the interviewer will know if he likes you within 3 seconds of meeting you.
    It's absolutely true, and if he doesn't you are going to have to really impress him - and not with your technical knowledge but your personality.
    This man is probably going to have to work with you so must like you.
    That said; on the plus side there is a massive shortage of electrical technicians - or automation engineers or whatever title they like to give these days.

    First tip (and opposite from what others have said) don't try and concentrate on the smile, handshake, eye contact etc. You can't fake these things
    and it will be obvious.
    Everyone is nervous on an interview and they know that. So looking at the floor and mumbling and giving a 'limp cock' handshake will not necessarily go against you.
    A big cheesy grin and a finger breaking handshake WILL

    As for technical questions you will be asked, it really does depend on the role but at the very least expect to see some CAD electrical diagrams of machinery at the plant.
    And you will be expected to at least know how to navigate them. A common one is - you will be shown a coil - say K3 and will be asked to find all the N/C and N/O contacts on all pages of that coil. This tests whether you can really read drawings as all the info you need will be right there below the coil.
    As for programming PLC's - you will just be asked basic questions. Don't BS this part - if you know - you know but if you don't say you don't but express your absolute desire to learn and advance your skills in this area. We all love somebody that is prepared and keen to learn; you might be eventually one of our company assets.

    GOOD LUCK
     
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  10. Dan
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    Dan I'm not a sparky but I know a couple ;-) Staff Member

    Location:
    Staffordshire
    Anybody know how he got on?
     
  11. SteveG
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    SteveG EF Member

    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    interview.jpg
     
    • Like Like x 4
  12. oracle
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    oracle Active EF Member

    Think they call the position Electrical Engineer, Maintenance now
     
  13. Spoon
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    Spoon Trusted Advisor

    Location:
    Lancashire
    All the contacts should be referenced next to the coil or on the coil contacts table shouldn't they?
     
  14. Knobhead
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    Knobhead Guest

    There’s my trick, make an impact.


    “Sorry I’m late, I got pulled for curb crawling”.


    The interview panel was in hysterics as I explained I lived in a red light district and being stopped by the police was quite normal.


    The job was mine without any sensible questions being asked, the HR manager was in tears of laughter.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. SteveG
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    SteveG EF Member

    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    That's right. There will be a reference to where they are, usually below the coil

    Like this;

    coils.png
    In this case K1 has a normally open contact on page 7 - under the number 5 (All pages will have a reference grid across the top and sides) ie 1-10 across and A - H down
    The MA in this case will mean where the main contactor is; Page 1 under 1.
    And you can see the common neutral, the 5.9 means it comes from page 5 under 9
     
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