We'll be featuring some of our successful past apprentices over the next few weeks. Here Matt Needham answers our questions:
Q. When did you start working for us? 7 August 2006
Q. How has your career developed since then? I’ve come from workshop apprentice to field service engineer, onto specialist engineer which then led to my current role of product specialist.
Q. What does an SMT apprenticeship give you that’s unique? You feel part of a company and working while being trained at the same time. The opportunity to work on Volvo products for a well-established dealer such as SMT should be an attractive prospect - not only are you working on the latest technologies, you are receiving excellent training and the opportunities leading from your apprenticeship can take you far beyond what you may have imagined, even into management if that’s what you want.
After doing some research into the construction equipment area and then having a guided tour of Warrington Depot - it seemed like an opportunity to be part of a big brand.
Q. What are you doing now? I've recently been promoted to product specialist supervisor for the North as part of an organisational structure change in product support - this brings a host of new challenges and broadens my experience for the future.
Q. What made you decide on a career in engineering? By luck really - my interests and extra school studies were based heavily around electronics and IT. But it turned out that these were a fundamental element of Volvo machines, meaning the interest soon became evident for engineering.
Q. What did you enjoy about your apprenticeship? The all-round experience of being employed, earning a wage, having hands on as well as theoretical training. It also opened up new experiences such as travelling away from home for long periods of time at college and meeting new people.