Why Lockheed Martin?
The company really stood out as an advanced global technology company that also offered the opportunity to travel and to work with colleagues around the globe to help solve some of the world’s most complex problems. Before joining as a graduate I completed work experience with the company, which gave me exposure to what the company works on in Australia.
What does your role involve?
At the moment I’m working on the Jindalee Over-the-Horizon Radar Network (JORN) Project. This is a government run program involving three Over-the-Horizon (OTHR) radars which are used to provide wide area surveillance of Australia’s northern approaches (both land and sea). An OTHR radar uses the ionosphere to bounce electromagnetic waves much further than a conventional line of sight radar, allowing it to detect targets at much greater distances. I’m currently involved in various aspects of the maintenance and support of the radar, as well as investigating potential future upgrades to the system.
How does the grad program work?
When I started, I was mostly involved in the radar project – a series of software development tasks – as part of the core engineering development team. This involved software design, development and testing. I then did two-week on, two-week off rotations, working out at the radar sites. This allowed me to learn more about the overall system and get a lot more hands-on experience than I would have otherwise.
The length of the graduate program itself is dependent on the individual as well as the opportunities available at the time. The program I was involved in ran for about two years, I then transitioned into a general software development role.
What are the highlights of the job?
I enjoyed going out and seeing the radar sites; the antenna arrays are a few kilometres long and you can’t really get a good idea of their scale without seeing them up close. Also, by being based out at site I was able to see other aspects involved in maintaining the radar, not just the software side of things. I have been very fortunate in my career thus far. In my four years with the company I have had opportunities to work on many different projects. There is always something new and interesting to go onto, which is something I’ve really enjoyed.
How is the work/life balance?
I do a normal nine-to-five sort of day; the company is quite flexible in terms of hours, which has been great.
I’d like to continue to work in a more technically focused role but transition to one where I can lead a team. I’m currently working with my managers to ensure that this happens. The company provides support for development and other career-focused opportunities, which I will be pursuing with the help of my manager.