“Everything is hunky-dory” – Catching up with Sean Tracey of Johnsons 1971
Back in March, we carried out an online interview with Sean Tracey who is Operations and Installations Manager at Johnsons 1871. Johnsons are a specialist removal business and one of the latest companies we’ve started working with on NVQ assessment. You can watch the original interview here.
Last time we spoke to Sean, he had just started his NVQ Level 2 in Fitted Interiors (along with three of his colleagues). This month we caught up with him again to find out how he got on with his qualification.
DMR: Any business updates since we last spoke? Are things back to normal yet since the latest lockdown was lifted?
Sean: The pandemic has had a big impact on the business, but everything is running smoothly again. In fact, it’s getting towards silly season again, and we are very busy. We’ve taken on casual workers for extra support and they’ll likely be offered full-time contracts once they’ve proved themselves – it’s only fair to them.
DMR: Why did you choose to do the NVQ?
Sean: We had been using the [CSCS] labourers cards without issue. But we knew we were doing a skilled trade and needed a recognised qualification and CSCS Skilled card to support this, and back up our experience. Now we have our NVQs and cards; everything is hunky-dory!
DMR: How did you find out about DMR Training and were you aware of European Social Fund support before you signed up to the NVQ?
Sean: We found DMR online but we didn’t know about ESF funding until Jody [DMR Employer Engagement Officer] explained it to us. The funding was a huge bonus, and we jumped on it!
DMR: Did your company support you during the NVQ and how do you think the qualifications will benefit the business?
Sean: I’ve worked at other companies, and so has my team. Previous employers never took the time to invest in us like Johnsons have. The qualifications will benefit the company as well as us as individuals. More work will come off the back of the NVQs and we now have tangible evidence to support our level of skill and experience…in our little area we are now fully certificated by a recognised awarding body.
DMR: Can you tell us how the NVQ assessment process went for you? Any issues?
Sean: Steve [DMR assessor] was superb. He was very flexible and responsive. Our work plans often changed at short notice, but Steve was very accommodating and would adapt to our plans. We can’t praise him more highly. The lads are all really pleased with their NVQs, and there has been a big boost to morale and confidence. We’d never taken qualifications before, but the NVQ assessment process confirmed we were doing everything right, including the health and safety aspects of the job, and this was a big confidence boost. There were no surprises in the NVQ and I think the only issue we had was that some of the photos submitted by one of our lads did not meet the requirements of satisfactory NVQ evidence. But that was quickly resolved.
Read more NVQ interviews and case studies on our blog.