In Conversation with Lift Apprentices

We recently had a chat with Lift Engineer Apprentices to gain insights into why they chose this industry as well as the perks that come with it

Here’s what they had to say!

Why did you apply for a Lift & Escalator Apprenticeship?

James was on a gap year before Uni, where he was going to study Political Science or Chemistry but decided the traditional educational route wasn’t for him anymore. After talking to his Dad whose a Lift Engineer, James applied. He said “the more I looked into it, it’s a good career path, good progression, good money. Yeah. That’s why I went for this.”

Ryan finished his college course in Public Services, all set to join the RAF. He decided he wasn’t ready… his old man who’s a Lift Engineer said “Why don’t you give it a shot? Why don’t you give it a go?” and after this conversation, Ryan decided to apply.

Are you thinking of applying this year? Click here to see a list of potential employers.

What’s been the most unexpected part of your apprenticeship? What came out that you just didn’t know about until you started?

For Xantha, Billy and Connor, they were all surprised at how safe lifts are as well as how complex they are. As Xantha said, “I’m surprised how safe and how comfortable I feel actually doing the job.” With Connor adding “All the things you see in TV, in movies, none of it is really true. There’s all these safety things in place to not allow that.”

Connor “was surprised at the fact how well everyone works together considering the massive age gap” between Apprentices and longstanding Lift Engineers. He was worried their first work night out was going to be a little awkward but he said “it was a different kind of laugh than you’d have with your mates, but it was just much the same, a good laugh, and it helped me feel a lot more comfortable in what I’m doing.”

Billy was always surprised by the friendliness. “I’ve worked with people who’ve left and said, “If you’re ever in trouble, you ring me, and I’ll try and help you out, and all that sort of stuff. There’s quite a lot of good people in the industry who’ll help you out.”

For more info, check out our Apprenticeship Programme Stages download that details both parts of the Apprenticeship and what to expect along the way.

What do you enjoy most about being an Apprentice & what’s been your steepest learning curve? 

Rhys’ biggest learning curve was “probably getting out of bed”, and when asked how he overcame this, he said “probably just the salary, to be honest.”

Jacob said “I quite enjoy just getting to work with people every day. The people I work with I consider friends, really. So, it’s quite nice just getting to spend the day with people, being social, going to site and just meeting new people and things like that.” His biggest learning curve was “getting up extra early and then finishing a bit later sometimes.”

Billy’s knowledge prior to his Apprenticeship was mainly mechanical so he said his biggest learning curve was “probably more the electrical side. I’d never done that before. I was always just mechanical, mechanical knowledge. Everyone’s learning, at the end of the day. That’s why you’re an apprentice. You’re learning it.”

The skills and knowledge you’ll learn during your Apprenticeship will help you level up – check out this download to see what they are.

What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about doing a lift and escalator apprenticeship?

Connor would sayObviously, a lot of folks have said there’s a bit more money in lift engineering. Nothing worth having is easy, so definitely be organised and come in willing to put in extra work and go above and beyond.” He learnt from his mistakes by leaving everything to the last minute. Instead of doing 4/5 hours after work for two weeks straight, he said “it’s a lot better to just try and do half an hour every day or half an hour most days, just chipping away at the big iceberg rather than try to take it all down in one.” Ultimately “it’s always worth it. It’s worth being organised and being willing to put in the effort.”

Ben’s advice is “Don’t stand around. Ask to get involved, because that’s how you learn.”

Freddy would say, “Do it. Just be prepared for a bit of banter on site and that.” Freddy suggested starting in construction as “if you can fit it, then you can service it, and then you can probably repair it as well.”

Charles said, “Do your research on the company or industry that you’re going to be entering. Make sure that you can get as much out of it as possible. Take every opportunity for possible growth. Even if it doesn’t end up being particularly useful in the moment, the knowledge you can gather can give you a lot more of a wider education on lots of different mechanical and different engineering subjects to help you grow further.” James added to this by saying “Watch a couple of videos on how they’re serviced, how they work, and go in with a bit of knowledge that will help you get the job.”

Jacob, Ryan, Freddy and Rhys all said to “be confident.” Jacob added to this and said “just go for it, apply for it, and do it, because chances are you’ll probably like it. Even if you don’t, you’ll still get really valid experience for anything you want to do in the future.”

To hear more from Apprentices, check out our stories page.

How has an Apprenticeship enabled you to grow in a work setting & what’s next for you?

Xantha said an Apprenticeship “Gives you an independence to take control of all of your learning and it has enabled her to be “more methodical thinking in her daily life. Because, if you’re fault finding, you have to go, “Is it this? No.” That’s step one, and then you go to step two. “Is it this, this, this? Oh, no. It’s this.” You’ve got to go through a process. It just improves how you do everything, I think.” Xantha hopes to become a Field Technician.

James has said distant learning throughout Covid has “provided a lot more technical knowledge and a lot of the theory behind how everything works.” James hopes to be a Technical Engineer.

Ben wants “to pass my qualification and hopefully stay in the industry for the majority of the future. I’m enjoying it, so I want to continue.”

Ben Lawrence

Charles said “With this Apprenticeship, the qualifications will provide me a great start in the job role. I’m hoping that, once I complete this Apprenticeship, there is a job for me within the company.” By getting involved in opportunities in the wider business of the company, he’s “grown in confidence and got a “greater understanding of the wider business and not just my own role.”

Connor is excited to “move abroad when I’m older and work across somewhere like Australia” as “although I’ll be in a whole new country, I’ll still be doing the same job just with a bit of a hotter climate, to be honest.”

To find out what your future could look like after a Lift Engineer Apprenticeship, check out this link.

What has an Apprenticeship enabled you to do?

For most of our Apprentices, the Apprenticeship has giving them all a sense of financial independence. These are just some of the things that they have been able to do:

  • Enjoy more motorcycle rides by buying better equipment like a new top box and USB ports
  • Going to concerts
  • Treating their girlfriends and friends
  • Going out with their mates
  • Visiting new places like Amsterdam
  • Buying certain things like a car

An apprenticeship won’t just level up your career, it’ll level up your life.

Do you think you have what it takes to be a Lift Apprentice? Find out here.

Find employers

There’s a brilliantly diverse range of employers in our industry. Lifts and Escalators are essential to keep everything moving, so we’re constantly growing. If you want to level up your career, you’ll find your perfect employer here.

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