Working for Adcock Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Ltd as an engineer is a hands-on, rewarding, technical role requiring a high level of responsibility and customer care. For a snapshot of engineer life, the company has written an ‘Engineer Career’ series based on insight, tips and feedback from their own engineers. In part one, the company explored the route to becoming an engineer. In part two, discover a day in the life of an Adcock engineer.

Adcock publishes this article with thanks to their team members Ben Moulson, Will Royal, Shaun Taylor, Richard Todd, Gavin Coakley and Lee Munday for their candid insight.

strategic problem solving

  • Compared to a typical 9-5 office job, how does HVAC engineering differ?

For a start, it’s not a sedentary way of working as one is always on the move. Paperwork and admin are part of the role but getting out and about to meet customers (any day of the week, depending on the shift) and getting their hands dirty is the main activity. This makes it a varied and stimulating job, as one is problem solving and working strategically to get results for different businesses.

Meeting new people, keeping customers happy and seeing end results is rewarding"

Days are very varied. Sometimes one might encounter systems or parts that they haven’t worked with before, but they will always be shown how to safely deal with them, or be able to observe a more experienced engineer. “Meeting new people, keeping customers happy and seeing end results is rewarding”, says Will, Install Mate.

fixing technical problems

  • Is engineering mostly about fixing technical problems?

Fixing issues is part of the job, but it encompasses a challenging mix of designing, installing, troubleshooting, replacing, servicing, undertaking site surveys or risk assessments, quoting and building relationships. Essentially, the engineer’s role is to find the right solution for the customer, taking into account things like sustainability, practicality, health and safety and cost efficiency.

“We had maintained the old R22 refrigeration pack for years and it was pleasing to see the old system replaced with a new energy efficient pack”, said Ben, Service Manager. A typical day is difficult to describe as no two days are the same but one enjoys the continuity of working on jobs that they have already started, and the spontaneity of responding to call outs that come in on the day. In part one of the blog, the company touched upon the mix of working alone and within a team.

possibilities to work

Depending on the job and their experience, they may be working on their own at times, in pairs or bigger groups, or even solving problems over the phone, as Service Manager Lee points out. Then of course there are the customers one meets - some familiar, some new - so it’s not a lonely job.

Going forward I know there could be possibilities to work within a different section of the company”

“When I first arrived at Adcock I was a service mate. Given training and opportunities, I have been able to progress and I am now out and about on my own, diagnosing and fixing faults on daily basis. Going forward I know there could be possibilities to work within a different section of the company”, says Shaun, Trainee Service Engineer.

high quality work

  • What’s motivating about HVAC engineering?

Using one’s knowledge and expertise to solve issues for customers, keeping their systems safe and efficient. Knowing that they have that ability is motivating and gives a real sense of pride. Adcock offers the best training in the UK and partners with renowned manufacturers so one will be qualified to work on world-class systems from Mitsubishi, Daikin, Toshiba and Fujitsu and be able to offer customers the best advice.

“The job includes many perks from personal reward through to salaries and overtime and being a team member. Also, we are provided with the necessary tools and training to provide high quality work”, says Shaun, Trainee Service Engineer. As one progresses, they may take on decision-making, team leadership and management. Providing a great service for customers means repeat business and building great relationships, which drives job satisfaction.

very quick turnarounds

“Our goal is to look after our clients’ equipment to a high standard, resolve any issues that they may have and give great customer service on all levels. So, when we work together as a team and achieve our desired goal it gives me added motivation to keep on improving.”, said Gavin, Service Manager.

  • What’s the most rewarding job that an engineer has worked on?

For Install Mate Will, one of his stand-out jobs was working at RAF Marham where new F35 jet planes were kept

Adcock engineering can take the engineer places, literally. HVAC systems are found in many interesting and prestigious buildings, some requiring clearance or very quick turnarounds because of time-critical operations. Just some of the ones mentioned by their engineers include The Tower of London, Silverstone Race Circuit and Kings College Cambridge.

Air Conditioning Systems

“The best project that I’ve ever worked on was a large installation project carried out in an office block just off Fleet Street. We had the task of installing 33 VRV Air Conditioning Systems over 11 levels.” Gavin, the Service Manager says. For Install Mate Will, one of his stand-out jobs was working at RAF Marham where new F35 jet planes were kept.

Installation Engineer Richard enjoyed working at The Bank of England as one of a few personnel to have clearance and responsibility to size up, design, and run the program of works as well as installing two VRF systems. For trainee engineer Shaun, his favorite project so far is a job carried out at the University of Norwich, which involved replacing two existing coldrooms from the Uni shop.

Digital service reporting

“I enjoyed this project as it was something I was involved in from start to finish, working alongside fellow engineers and liaising with other contractors in order to get the job finished.”

  • Do engineers at all levels get to work with new technology?

“I do, yes, and I love it”, says Richard, Installation Engineer.

With new technology emerging all the time, there is always something to learn such as smart controls and renewable technology. Digital service reporting and the use of tablets and mobiles to share data and to communicate with colleagues and customers make the day more productive. It’s certainly an exciting time to start or switch to a career in engineering. Adcock has many job opportunities around the UK. Perks include generous holiday, competitive salary and overtime.

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