While they all followed different paths to Prodeval, our mobile technicians do have one constant topic of conversation: the desire for autonomy and freedom, while also being a team player.
A multi-talent profession
The job is a manual one that involves open space, travel, human contact, and service.
It is also a hands-on job for those who like to roll up their sleeves and dig right in. In this case, we’re talking mechanics, electricity, heating, pigging—basically the entire installation chain.
The company was much smaller when the first mobile technicians came on board, but we already know that it has since grown and continues to grow very quickly. Installation and commissioning, maintenance and repairs—initially grouped together—became stand-alone services over time.
Daniel Hynes says he was fortunate to be able to get facilities up and running and to then return for maintenance and repair work.
He was initially trained as an electrician, and then in biomedical maintenance and automation. Today, Hynes finds himself in a dream “hands-on” environment where he gets to not only work on electrical, mechanical, and heating systems, but also drain compressors, sweep boilers, and maintain cooling coils.
And although he is still sometimes called on to assist with commissioning, most of the time he can be found working in after-sales service and maintenance.
For his part, Samy Fragères began as an electrician in the construction industry before switching to industrial maintenance, but he still wasn’t satisfied. He craved action and variety. And now he’s finally found what he’s been looking for!
Thrilled with the trust they showed him, Fragères admits that in the first six months when he was paired up with a buddy, every day was different and new. And even since working solo or when called on to mentor new colleagues, whether for maintenance or responding to a breakdown, the work is still anything but routine! It seems like no two days are alike.
The work week is partly structured around travel. Arriving on a job site to do maintenance, for example, can take a day or two . . . sometimes more. And that doesn’t take into account the different situations you may have to deal with, whether you’re the one being mentored, or you’re training new hires while also benefiting from their personal experience in their field or area of expertise, or even if you’re just passing through the office, and escalating issues up the ladder, in person.
From week to week, mobile technicians need to plan their schedules based on the projects entrusted to them. They can choose where to stay, whether they want to drive in the morning, work in the afternoon and then hit the road again the next day, or whether they prefer arriving on site at the end of the day so they’re ready for work bright and early the next morning. It all depends on what tasks need to be performed and the distances to be travelled. In short, they are masters of their time and, as a result, must arrange their schedule accordingly.
If they need help or have doubts, they know they can rely on the HQ team, which can be reached online at any time. There is always someone to support them in their work.
Service above all else
Their deep-rooted motivation is serving clients.
Client relationships are their entire raison d’être. Talking to clients, understanding their needs, digging down until they know why the breakdown occurred, and then resolving the issue. That’s what it’s all about for them, pure and simple.
And while clients usually greet our technicians with relief, they also have many questions that need answering. Our field technicians experience great satisfaction in being able to answer those questions and resolve any issues or irritants. When their work is done—and our clients are smiling and happy and their facilities are running more smoothly—our technicians always leave the site feeling buoyed and energized.
It goes without saying, of course, that there isn’t always a “problem” to fix!
Every 2,000 hours, a field technician drops in to see the client, check their facility, and make sure everything is in order. There are also an increasing number of components installed to assist with diagnostics in an effort to avoid breakdowns.
Among the checks carried out is the inspection of highly sensitive equipment, namely filtration devices in which the still wet gas is dried. Moreover, the filters must be opened to see what condition they are in. Automatic and manual purges can also be done to specifically check for condensates in areas where there should be none. All these steps are designed to ensure the facility is operating properly.
This may require shutting everything down for a while, which can negatively affect the client’s cash flow while the work is underway. Some may get annoyed, but once the checks have been completed and a few parameters have been tweaked, the system works much more efficiently! And when the technician switches everything back on, the client is happy again and usually says: “It works even better than before! What did you do?”
Below is an example of this type of human connection and how it has evolved of late. Here’s what Daniel had to say:
“We have a facility in the Czech Republic. The site manager and I communicate in English. He had determined that there was a problem with the compressor, so he called in the subcontractor and was counting on me to confirm that the compressor was, in fact, defective. But it was working perfectly. The problem was something else altogether: The program was causing the facility to regularly shut down. After asking the site manager questions and working remotely with emergency customer services at HQ, we resolved the issue. The client was relieved and satisfied. So much so that when I returned recently, amid the COVID‑19 health restrictions, he was more than happy to let me stay in his office located above his home, because all the hotels were closed. He had planned everything, right down to the meals! I was welcomed as a friend.”
There is no greater satisfaction for a mobile worker than to continuously strive to do their part for a cleaner, better world.
And that’s what we’re currently doing in Canada. We’ll tell you all about those projects soon!
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