What can you expect when joining Brunel as a specialist? We’re taking a closer look at Wycher's career trajectory at Brunel, who joined the company in April 2016. Since then, he has been able to work on six different client projects and accelerate his career in maintenance engineering.
During his time at Brunel, Wycher completed various projects and collaborated with clients from the energy and food production industries.
Hi Wycher, you joined Brunel seven years ago as a maintenance specialist. Tell us, what did you study to become a maintenance engineer?
I completed a bachelor's degree in construction management in 2007, but unfortunately, due to the construction crisis in the Netherlands at that time, many of the major construction firms were not hiring. As a result, I had to seek employment in other fields, and that's how I began my career in mechanical engineering and maintenance. Although it was not the path I had originally planned, it ultimately led to a positive outcome.
For some people, the term specialist may still be unclear. Would you mind explaining what a Brunel specialist does?
Sure! as the name suggests, a specialist is someone with specialised knowledge or expertise in a particular field. When you're hired as a specialist at Brunel, you have the opportunity to apply your expertise by working on diverse projects. Brunel collaborates with numerous prominent clients across multiple industries, and as a specialist, you provide support to these clients for a specific period and work on-site at their premises.
During your time at Brunel, you completed various projects and collaborated with clients from the energy and food production industries. Could you provide additional information about these projects?
In my first project, I worked as a maintenance planner, providing support in developing maintenance schedules and coordinating with technicians to ensure the timely completion of maintenance tasks on the Dutch natural gas infrastructure. During my second project, I worked at the first LNG import terminal in the Netherlands and helped to establish a more structured maintenance organization. After that, I worked as a maintenance engineer at two power plants- one powered by biomass and one by natural gas. With my fourth client, I worked on integrating a biogas plant into an asset management system, trained junior engineers, and provided guidance on improving compliance, managing risk, and increasing efficiency. In my fifth project, I transformed the maintenance structure of the client by overhauling their maintenance procedures and eliminating waste. Currently, in my project at a global coffee and tea company, I am serving as an advisor in addition to my engineering duties. Not only am I standardizing their use of the asset management system, but I am also completely transforming their maintenance organization by implementing new procedures, providing training and coaching to their team leaders, maintenance engineers, and maintenance planners.
Your list of projects is truly impressive. Would you say that each of these projects had an aspect of innovation or pioneering to it?
Definitely. My work has primarily focused on revolutionising and modernising maintenance organisations. Since there is no off-the-shelf solution, I must carefully consider each client's unique requirements and tailor a suitable and effective solution.
What, in your personal opinion, are the benefits of working at Brunel, particularly with regards to the opportunity to collaborate on various projects with different clients?
Working at Brunel has numerous benefits.
- Firstly, their extensive client network has enabled me to work on exciting projects with some of the biggest industry players. Without Brunel's connections, I may not have had the opportunity to be a part of these projects.
- Secondly, each project comes with its unique challenges and opportunities to learn. Working with new clients exposes me to different people, work styles, and ways of thinking, which helps to exponentially increase my learning curve. I started at Brunel as a maintenance planner and, within seven years, I progressed to become a maintenance advisor and have more experience than most people my age. Essentially, Brunel provides a platform to accelerate your career and grow in a relatively short period of time.
- Thirdly, and perhaps the most significant aspect for me, is that I am never bored. As someone who craves stimulation, being stuck in the same role, at the same company, doing the same tasks for years on end would be unsatisfying. However, with Brunel, I can explore new job opportunities without worrying about the negative perception often associated with job-hopping and how it may affect my CV.
In addition to gaining on-the-job experience, have you had the opportunity to participate in any development programs offered by Brunel?
Yes, for instance, last year, I graduated from Europe’s first accredited post-graduate course in Hydrogen. Over the course of 9 months, our curriculum encompassed a wide range of subjects, including the fundamentals of hydrogen, hydrogen production, and the utilization of hydrogen in various sectors such as mobility, industry, and the built environment. We also delved into the intricacies of the complete value chain of hydrogen, as well as topics related to policies, laws, and legislative aspects surrounding hydrogen. Moreover, I also had the opportunity to participate in Brunel's Reliability & Maintenance Engineering Training, which spanned over one year and was divided into two parts. During the first six months, we received technical and theoretical training on subjects such as maintenance strategies, root cause analysis, FMECA, failure registration, gatekeeping, and human factor analysis. In the following six months, the program focused on personal development and soft skills, which gave me insight into my own behavior and taught me how to use my newly acquired skills to communicate effectively with various stakeholders.
Interested in Brunel’s Maintenance Excellence Training programme?
At the moment, Brunel’s Maintenance Excellence Training programme is only offered in the Netherlands.However, we are excited to announce that we will soon be launching this programme globally. If you’re interested in enrolling for the course, please click on the contact button below. We will be in touch with you as soon as we release dates for your country, as well as to discuss how else Brunel can support you.
Where do you see yourself in the future? Are you ready to take on even more challenges?
Always! Well, for now, my focus is on learning more in my role as a maintenance advisor and improving myself and of course, I want to take on more challenging client projects in the near future. In Dutch we say; “Stilstand is achteruitgang” which can be translated to “If you’re not moving forward, you’re falling behind”. So, I would be interested in exploring new industries and expanding my skill set. While I have gained extensive experience in the oil & gas and food & beverage industries, I am open to the possibility of exploring new sectors, such as the high-tech industry.