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MEET THE TEAM: Paul Marshall - Lorry Loader Installation & Training Co-ordinator

MEET THE TEAM: Paul Marshall - Lorry Loader Installation & Training Co-ordinator


What does a job role in engineering and manufacturing involve today? Sadly, there are still a number of myths and misconceptions surrounding our industry, with the most common being; manufacturing and engineering jobs are just for men, jobs within our industry are low paid, manufacturing work is repetitive and manual, prospects for graduates aren’t so good as in other sectors, manufacturing doesn’t have a future in the digital age.

The truth of the matter is that work within manufacturing and engineering actually offers varied, rewarding and diverse careers with good pay and the chance of a dynamic long-term career. Our sector has much to offer and by helping others understand this we will give them every reason to want to get involved. Manufacturing and engineering offers people the chance to choose the career path that is right for them. Whether it's to ‘earn and learn’ as an apprentice or join industry as a graduate, the fact is that there are so many options to choose from! 

It’s essential that we get this message out there so that more young people feel inspired to pursue a great career in our sector. We're launching a series of career profiles within the lifting equipment industry to really show how diverse careers can be within our sector. This week we talk to Paul Marshall - Lorry Loader Installation & Training Co-ordinator...

What does the role involve?

I coordinate lorry loader installation and crane operator training for our wide range of vehicle mounted lifting equipment customers.

FV500 Vehicle Mounted Lifting Crane

An incorrectly mounted loader crane is not only unsafe but can also render the vehicle unsafe – it’s therefore vital that customers use a competent installer. Being the manufacturer, we have unrivalled product knowledge and we also offer the dedicated facilities, in-house skills, qualifications, experience and equipment required to carry out safe and efficient lorry loader installations – we’ve been installing lorry-loaders for almost 40 years! It’s perhaps not then surprising that many of our customers choose to have their equipment installed at our premises and it’s my job to coordinate all of our installation work and ensure all the necessary paperwork surrounding each installation is complete.

Penny Hydraulics Office and Company Vans

The latest health and safety legislation requires that all employers ensure that all employees using or supervising the use of lorry loaders have received adequate training in method, risk and precautions associated with that equipment. Where an approved site certificate or industry card may be required we would always suggest using an approved ALLMI training provider and it’s my job to coordinate this training for our diverse range of vehicle mounted lifting equipment customers.

What skills and qualifications are desirable for this role?

I have a degree in Mechanical Engineering which really helps, especially if I’m part of a team responsible for compiling installation instructions for a particular install project which I do from time to time. That said, the degree is not strictly necessary for this role. Outside of work, I’ve always had a keen interest in vehicles and motorsport and worked in this industry prior to joining Penny Hydraulics – again this gave me valuable knowledge and provided a great foundation to work from. This really helps when I’m checking OEM chassis manufacturers Body Builder Guide Lines for a particular installation, for example.

Motorsport Car

What personal attributes are required?

I deal with hundreds of different people every day from within our company, as well as customers. When organising training, I also talk to and meet with providers approved to deliver ALLMI accredited training courses – companies such as Mentor. This being the case, it’s essential to be a people person in my role.

It’s also fundamental to be organised and have the ability to think ahead. Our installation schedule is extremely busy as we don’t just install customers equipment, we’re often working on proto-type installations too for brand new bespoke products. I have to permanently think ahead to make sure that customers get the installation slot they need.

Training providers are busier than ever before, so it’s no good trying to organise training once the customer has had their lifting equipment fitted – that’s too late. I always have to make sure that training is considered very early on in the buying process to ensure we can get the appropriate training scheduled for our customers on their desired dates and times. This isn’t always easy considering you might be talking about 300 members of staff that need training within a short time-frame of 2 to 3 weeks.

What type of previous experience is needed / preferable?

Although I had no prior experience working in lorry loader installation and training prior to working in my current position, I’ve always had a keen interest in vehicles and machinery and this makes the job really interesting to me. This interest combined with my degree in mechanical engineering, along with my personal traits I feel are a perfect match for the role. I don’t think you necessarily need to have worked with lorry loaders before to succeed in this role.

Who do you work with in this role? 

I work very closely with our sales team which is made up of staff based at our HQ in Clowne, Chesterfield and a number of sales managers who are based throughout the UK. It’s essential to be well-immersed in new sales coming through the business so I can make contact with customers early and broach the subject of installation and training with them. I also have to keep a very close eye on the lorry loaders themselves as they go through the production process as any fluctuations in manufacture lead time can have an impact on any installation and training booked.

Paul Marshall Penny Hydraulics

I also work closely with our dedicated Lorry Loader Design Engineer and installation teams that actually fit the lorry loaders. By working as a team, we put together a complete and accurate technical file for the installation – which is essential paperwork that accompanies any installation. Each technical file consists of; the order confirmation; technical drawings and calculations; installation instructions and a EC Declaration of Conformity.

What would the typical hours be (e.g. office hours, Monday to Friday)?

08:30- 17:00 Monday to Friday

Climbing the ladder - what are the routes of progression and related occupations that this role could lead to?

I’m currently the sole person that’s 100% dedicated to training and installation co-ordination within the company. We recently introduced a new range of 472 hydraulic truck cranes to our existing crane range and as a result we’re busier than ever before. If business continues to grow at this rate, I foresee us adding more staff to assist with the coordination of crane and installation training and if that’s the case, I would love to take on a more managerial role.

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