Protecting our nation for more than 70 years, AWE is a team of remarkable people achieving extraordinary things every day.

Why work for us?

To work at AWE is to play a valuable part in keeping our country safe and secure. AWE employs around 7,500 women and men undertaking some of the most important work, in support of the most important mission – keeping the nation safe. We have some of the most brilliant people, working on some of the most complex challenges and achieving things like no other company.

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People are the heart of our company

Whether you’re an engineer, scientist or business services professional, we couldn’t achieve what we do without the pride and commitment that our people have in doing the job they do. Our values – Connecting with respect, We keep our promises, We embrace simplicity, We are safe and secure – are an important part of our working life and we inspire people to live them every day. At AWE, we are passionate about developing talent. We aim to build and maintain a culture of high performance, providing continuous development to give people – whatever stage they are at in their career – the support they need to thrive and reach their full potential. We believe in supporting our people through long-term investment in learning and development. Alongside in-house and on-line training capabilities, we support membership of professional bodies.

We also focus on building and developing leadership skills, in pursuit of our best-in-class ambition. We do this through tailored leadership development programmes, accredited by the Chartered Management Institute, designed to equip our leaders with the skills to drive performance and bring out the best in their teams.

Making a real difference, both nationally and locally, and giving back to the community is a strong part of our culture. We have a long history of supporting charities and, as one of the largest STEM employers in the local area, through our award-winning schools outreach programme we support schools across West Berkshire and North Hampshire (Reading, Newbury, Basingstoke).

Group of colleagues of different ages having a meeting

What is it like to work here?

We know that creating a diverse workforce is critical to our future, and we are committed to a positive and inclusive environment. AWE is a company of five generations with people from their late teens through to their late 80s. Our employee-led working groups, representing the diversity within our company, have been integral to the progression that we have made. This has been recognised through benchmarking our approach to D&I with enei, WISE and Stonewall, for example. Through our Employee Voice and Engagement Champions groups we encourage inclusivity in our approach, creating a ‘speak up’ environment where our people are listened to as well as communicated with.

​​​​​​​AWE’s generational working group helps the five generations of staff employed at AWE to work effectively together.  It provides the assistance people may need to feel valued, enjoy their work, and succeed regardless of their age. The group promotes a culture where people value each other’s knowledge and experience regardless of their age. We also have a Monthly Women’s Wellness Group, campaigns linked to Men’s Health Week and an interactive Health Kiosk providing health MOT’s.

Recognising that work is a thing we do, not just a place we go to, we are creating a modern approach to our ways of working, providing greater choice: where, when and how we work dependant on what we’re doing. This gives our people the flexibility to balance work around home life and caring responsibilities.

The benefits

We believe in ‘A Fair Deal’ for all our employees by offering a modern, consistent and sustainable approach to reward across our business.

Competitive salary and regular pay reviews

We use an independent company to benchmark our salaries, to ensure they’re competitive against industry standards. And we also conduct regular performance-related pay reviews.

The AWE working pattern

The working structure at AWE differs from other companies. We operate a 9-day working fortnight, which means our sites close every other Friday.
What does this mean? Our working pattern operates on a 2-weekly cycle, so:

  1. During the first week, you’ll work Monday to Friday for a total of 41 hours
  2. During the second week, you’ll work Monday to Thursday for a total of 33 hours – and not work on the Friday

You can also choose full or part-time hours to fit around your family and we are open to flexible working arrangements.

Male worker in front of a group of colleagues looking towards the camera

Annual leave

Because our working pattern differs from that of other companies, we calculate our annual leave in hours. We’ll give you time to recharge your batteries with 270 hours of holiday each year for a full-time employee; that’s equal to at least 25 days plus bank holidays. Holiday hours are pro rata for part time employees. This is in addition to our 9-day fortnight.

Our generous Shared Parental Leave arrangements, allowing employees to share maternity or adoption leave with a partner, are also available to a grandparent if they have significant responsibility for the child’s upbringing and take time off to support the birth parent or to care for the new child.There are also options for special leave, bereavement leave, time off for public duties and taking a career break.

The AWE Group Personal Pension

Upon being enrolled in the pension scheme, you’ll pay a percentage of your salary into the pension scheme each month, added to which the Company makes generous contributions. It’s flexible, so you can increase or decrease the amount you pay into the scheme at any time.

AWE Life Insurance

We also provide a life insurance benefit for all employees, aged up to and including 74.

This mean that, in the event of your death, the Company would pay a lump sum death-in-service benefit of four-times your salary.

Financial Education and Benefits

Understanding and taking care of your money is incredibly important and we want to Make Money Simpler for everyone. There’s access to financial information online plus you’ll receive regular but short informative communications from our financial education partner.

To help spread the cost of environmentally friendly transport, we offer interest-free loans for cycle purchase and for buying a rail season ticket.

For those wishing to save, we provide access to a Stocks and Shares ISA and a Fund & Share account. And there’s also access to a discounted will writing service.

Voluntary Benefits and Staff discounts

Through our MyChoices scheme, you can benefit from discounts on a wide range of lifestyle and financial products and services.
If you’d like to know more about what it’s like to be part of the AWE team, here’s what a few of them have to say.


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