Trainee posts at the Vehicle Certification Agency

If you have a basic knowledge and experience in automotive engineering, why not fast-track your career with our trainee scheme. Learn the role of our engineers as they teach you the skills and requirements to become competent in our area of expertise.

You will have opportunities to work around the United Kingdom as well as internationally in places such as Europe, India, China, Korea and Japan where you will continue to develop your technical and all-round skills.

Begin your journey with us…

As a trainee certification or compliance engineer, you will spend 12 to 18 months learning on the job, gaining practical hands-on experience, working with subject matter experts in a diverse range of subjects including propulsion, primary and secondary safety and quality management systems. You will undertake a number of internal placements within different departments to ensure that you have a holistic view of the agency and understand how it contributes towards national and international safety and environmental ambitions.

Additionally, you will have the opportunity to expand your knowledge and experience through internal and external training courses in subject specific areas such as propulsion and internationally recognised quality management training such as ISO9001/ISO17020/ISO17025/ISO17065.

Having completed your initial training, you will work with some of the most renowned names in the automotive industry on a national and international stage. You will have opportunities to work around the United Kingdom as well as internationally in places such as Europe, India, China, Korea and Japan where you will continue to develop your technical and all-round skills.

Meet our Trainees

Have a look below to see what our current Trainees have to say!


    I have always been interested in cars and graduated with an automotive engineering degree but with limited practical experience. I’m really enjoying my role as a Trainee Compliance Engineer where I have been exposed to opportunities that no single car manufacturer could have provided. Through placements and working alongside experienced engineers, the VCA has provided me with a comprehensive insight into the automotive industry. Undertaking this trainee scheme over the past 15 months has provided a variety of practical learning opportunities, such as crash and impact testing or challenging the braking capacity of trucks.


    Trainee Compliance Engineer

    Current Programmes

    Applications are closed at the present time – Please register your interest using the options below.

    Stay connected

    If you are interested in joining the VCA, sign up to be the first to hear when new opportunities emerge.

    Create a job alert

    All VCA jobs are listed on the Civil Service Jobs website. Once you have created an account, click on the link below to create a job alert. Remember to choose ‘Vehicle Certification Agency’ in the Department filter.

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    Subscribe to our mailing list to hear about current and upcoming opportunities, click on the link below, enter your details and ensure you select the ‘Careers’ topic.

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    Benefits of working for the VCA

    Competitive salary

    A competitive salary and a range of potential allowances.


    Up to 30 days annual leave (with a minimum of 25 days). An opportunity to buy and sell annual leave.

    A Civil Service Pension

    Read more about Civil Service Pensions.

    Flexible working

    Including flexi-time and home working (subject to operational requirements).

    Family friendly policies

    Family friendly policies to support maternity, paternity and shared parental leave.

    Skills allowance

    Earn more with our range of additional annual allowances (Subject to role) including our Engineering Skills Allowance.

    Employee discount scheme

    Discounts on a range of products and service through our employee discount scheme.

    Health and wellbeing support

    Access to an Employee Assistance Programme, supporting a range of well-being needs.

    Staff recognition

    Local Recognition Award payments for individuals or teams.

    Free Parking

    Free onsite parking and reduced rates for vehicle charging at our larger sites.

    Cycle to work scheme

    Save money on a new bike and spread the cost over monthly tax-free instalments.

    Corporate Clothing

    Annual corporate clothing allowance.

    Learning and Development

    Structured development plans and time for learning and development.

    External Training

    Opportunities to attend external training courses.

    Volunteering time

    Up to 3 days per year volunteering time.

    Networking Groups

    Access to a range of Civil Service and Department for Transport network groups.

    Trainee Application Process

    How to apply


    Application submission and sift

    As part of the application process, you will be asked to supply your Curriculum Vitae (CV) and provide a personal statement. For the personal statement, you will be asked to provide examples against the criteria listed in the “How to Apply” section of the advert.

    If you pass the initial application sift, you’ll be invited to attend an in-person assessment.


    In-person assessment

    We will assess your suitability using success profiles to evaluate your behaviours, experience and strengths.

    Click here to find out more about Success Profiles on the GOV.UK website.



    If you are successful at interview, you will be sent a provisional offer. Once you have accepted this, the onboarding process for you joining the agency will begin. Once complete, you will be sent a formal offer and a member of the HR team will arrange a phone conversation to discuss the terms and conditions of your employment.

    Person working on laptop

    Applying to the VCA

    Help, guidance and tips on what to do when applying as well as further information about life and careers within the civil service.

    Next Steps

    If you are interested in applying for one of our roles, we’d love to hear from you. Please keep an eye on this page and Civil Service Jobs for opportunities at the VCA.