Apprentice Case Study

Sam Crawford -  Third Year Construction Apprentice

What made you choose to pursue a career in engineering?

I have been raised in a family of engineers from all backgrounds, so you could say it’s in my blood. I have always enjoyed pushing spanners and learning how various machines and mechanisms work and I enjoy the sense of achievement when a project is finished, and a machine is running.

Why did you choose to apply to complete the Finning Apprenticeship?

Working on old machinery has always been my hobby and interest and when I found the apprenticeship and got through the application and was accepted, I couldn’t have been happier. Caterpillar has been a brand I have known all my life and what better than to work on modern equipment at work and come home and work on the equipment that built the company’s reputation.

What are you enjoying the most about your apprenticeship?

I really enjoy the team work and the comradery that comes with it, as well as working on something individually and being able to put my name to it when its finished. Also, I think almost every day of work I have learnt something, be it a small little tip or trick to get a job done easier or learning how the different functions of a machine such as hydraulics work.

What are you finding the most challenging about your apprenticeship?

I have found the vast array of different systems in modern machinery challenging to get up to speed with, but bit by bit I am getting used to it and learning more and more every day. Also, If I have to be honest, the PPE (personal protection equipment) and the companies rules/standards on health and safety can also be a lot to take in but it is easy to get used to. 

What do you hope to do once you have completed your apprenticeship programme?

When I finish my apprenticeship I plan to stay with the company, at the moment I have mostly been workshop based and have not had much time in the field so I can’t really say what I would prefer but if I had to it would be workshop as I enjoy the feel of community, and I enjoy the projects that we get.

What advice would you give to anyone considering applying for an apprenticeship programme at Finning?

Think hard about ‘is this the right job/industry for me’? It is not a job for the faint hearted and it will not be a walk in the park. However, it’s very rewarding and the support from the company is excellent, you will learn not only how to be an engineer but also how to be a better person. With a hard-working mentality and the willingness to work you can make an excellent career with Finning.

On reflection, what did you think of the recruitment process before you started your apprenticeship?

One thing I will say is the application is long and very thorough and for a good reason as Finning want people who they can turn into the best of the best.

On reflection, what was your experience of the apprenticeship Induction?

I thought the induction was very informative, there was an awful lot to take in which is to be expected in this sort of industry. I feel two weeks was plenty for the induction and each day was planned quite well with the others.

What would you say about the support you are given as an apprentice?

The support apprentices are given is excellent, there is a lot to learn and take in but with the support of other engineers and team leaders this can be a lot easier. The company supports apprentices and engineers brilliantly as at the end of the day nothing would get done if there was no engineers.