Three words… Life Is On
My journey at Schneider Electric started in October 2019 when I received a call from the HR team informing me that I had been shortlisted for an interview for the 2020 graduate program. I was excited and nervous all at once! As an early career in South Africa, searching for employment can be a quite gloomy and discouraging process due to the high unemployment rate in the country.
Prior to sending my application, I had researched Schneider Electric and the first thing I found was the slogan Life Is On – those three words written in a bright green color really grabbed my attention.
The Journey – Feeling Empowered
Fast forward to the day of the interview, where I had to present my university design project (UPS System) to a panel of interviewers. I was anxious yet very determined. As an Electrical Engineering graduate who is passionate about electronics and digital technology, I could not see myself happy or content in any other company besides Schneider Electric. When it was my turn to ask the interviewers questions, I asked how they feel being Schneider Electric employees. The panel shared how empowered they feel and how Schneider as an employer is encouraging the employees to #DareToDisrupt & be #empowered – I feel exactly the same now that I am part of such a great company. Let me tell you why.
My graduate program started in February 2020 with a memorable and exciting day at the office and everyone was welcoming. I joined the Buildings team where I was assigned to two buddies who helped me settle in and asked about my career interests so that they could give me the right resources to empower me and make me feel comfortable in my role. I was so excited to get straight into the work, but before I could do that I had lots of learning to do! Using the Schneider Electric online learning platform, which was available every day for all Schneider employees, I could learn everything from how to communicate effectively to how many communication ports a digital meter has – I felt truly empowered.
Unfortunately, the exciting first few months in the office were short-lived as the COVID-19 pandemic hit us in South Africa, and life as we knew it came to a standstill! We were forced to stay at home, work from home and everyone had to quarantine. I was becoming anxious as I had just started to become accustomed to my new working environment and team. Sitting at home and not having any close contact with my team, not being able to shadow any of my colleagues made me feel disconnected for a while. To my surprise, I realized that I was a part of a very inclusive and collaborative team, and with the introduction of the New Ways of Working Policy at Schneider Electric that encourages working from home and prioritizing our mental health- I was able to continue to feel #empowered throughout this time.
Inclusive Working Culture
To say that I was excited when I was offered a permanent role in January 2021 would be an understatement 😊. I could not wait to start my role in 2021 and to know that I was now officially a part of a truly amazing company. As we continue into 2021, with Covid-19 restrictions still imposed, I am so grateful to be a part of a company that puts its employee’s health and safety first, that promotes diversity and inclusion in everything they do and to continue to learn every single day in my journey here at Schneider Electric.
If you would like to join an inclusive company, empowering teams and a place to grow in every day, check our careers here: https://www.se.com/za/en/about-us/careers/overview.jsp
About the Author
Londiwe Mngadi is a BTech: Electrical Engineering graduate from the University of Johannesburg who was born and raised in a small town in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. During her practical training(P1&P2) she was trained in electrical wiring, carpentry, fitting and turning, boiler making, automation and has worked in a sale engineering environment, where she was compiling proposals and interacting with customers as part of business development. Londiwe joined Schneider Electric in a fulltime job starting January 2021 as a Product Application Engineer.