Hazelwood company Lubrizol is preparing to increase its investment in young people by preparing to take on a record number of temporary placement students next year.
Lubrizol, based in Nether Lane, is already preparing its recruitment campaign to attract its next crop of students after it equalled its highest-ever intake in 2018.
The company currently has 27 students working in a number of departments across its site and is one of the most sought-after destinations for university students who are looking take a year out of studying for their degrees in order to get experience of working in the corporate world.
Next year Lubrizol wants to increase the number to 30, while the company has also recruited three placement students at its site in Manchester for the first time.
Lubrizol received hundreds of applications for its placements from undergraduates from around the UK and Europe this year and its current crop are drawn from 15 different universities, including Derby, Nottingham, Leeds, York and Durham.
They are working in a variety of roles in a wide range of disciplines, including human resources, chemistry, engineering, finance and procurement.
Among them is Alex Jackson, who is currently studying a BSc in Information Technology Management at the University of Derby but put her studies on hold to take up a placement in Lubrizol’s Global Communications department.
Her day-to-day role involves managing data and helping to organise marketing activity for the company, which develops and manufactures the next generation of engine additives, including research, generating marketing material and overseeing photoshoots.
She said: “I never wanted to go to university originally because I wanted to go out into the world of work as early as possible, but my degree is designed to give me the best of both worlds and I’m thoroughly enjoying my year working at Lubrizol.
“I’ve learned about global organisations and picked up skills such as leadership much quicker than I would have done at university and my opinions are valued on matters which affect the business, which I really enjoy.
“Lubrizol recognises that we are still students, but we are still treated as part of the team, which is nice. The first week when I was sitting at my desk on my own was daunting, but I feel at home now and I’ve settled into my role.”
Lubrizol has a strong track record when it comes to recruiting young people and 45 placement students from previous years have returned to Hazelwood take up full-time roles.
It has also recruited 18 former YTS apprenticeship students and taken on five employees who are former sponsored PhD students.
Sam Bradbury, UK HR Manager for Lubrizol, said: “We’re extremely proud of our student placement programme and it has proven to be extraordinarily successful for us over the years.
“We had more applications this year than ever before and it is extremely difficult to get a place on our programme, but successful students like Alex go onto demonstrate skills and talents which have a real tangible benefit to the company.
“At the end of last year, 14 per cent of our total staff were former placement, apprenticeship or PhD students. That’s the highest figure ever and fully justifies the time and money we invest in young people.”