Thales Group - josh-western
Graduate / Space / Assistant Commercial Officer
My first role involved co-authoring key documents in a bid worth over £14m. The project gave me a detailed insight into the bid structure and process, from receiving the initial request and coming up with a solution to presenting it back to the customer. This gave me exposure to face-to-face negotiations with suppliers, which improved my soft skills and presentation technique no end. I also went to Portsmouth to present solutions to the Royal Navy. Not only did this give me a better understanding of our products and services, it helped me to get to know one of our biggest clients.

Working in the space domain, you know you’re doing important work. I genuinely feel that I’m pushing the boundaries of science and every day I know a bit more about our solar system and our own planet.

I’m currently working on a project to develop a new accelerometer for space application, which will be used in piloting new space rovers for future European missions. Not only have I come to appreciate the difficulties of ensuring that a product is truly space worthy, but I’ve learned a lot working with the European Space Agency and other space companies.

Collaboration is the name of the game at Thales. I worked closely with another graduate on a project which involved analysing financial data to see if cost savings could be made. The answer was yes – between £125k and £500k and we put forward our proposals. This led to us conducting further investigative analysis for the department and implementing a series of time-saving processes for the team.

If you’re thinking of joining Thales, the most important thing to know is that there is a huge wealth of support available to you when you’re new to the business. There are plenty of training courses to aid your learning and people around you will be more than happy to share their knowledge. None more so than your mentor, who can shed light on matters that you’re not sure of, help with your career development and point you in the direction of other key figures in the business who can help you.