Having gained his regular driving licence, the company put him through Class 2 and Class 1 HGV driving licences to allow him to drive trucks and articulated lorries respectively. Now the logistics and construction giant is putting John, aged 20, through a Modern Apprenticeship in conjunction with New College Lanarkshire to become a HGV Technician. His apprenticeship involves working blocks of four weeks at the company’s logistics headquarters in Newhouse Industrial Estate followed by a one-week block release at the College’s Motherwell Campus.
A former pupil of Lochend Community High School in Easterhouse, John said: “I really like coming to college as well as work – the equipment in college is spot-on, especially the snap-on tools, and the facilities are excellent.
“My dad, who was also called John, used to work for WH Malcolm. He was a forklift truck driver at Newhouse, and he loved working there, but he passed away when I was 12. As soon as I left school after sixth year, I got a job straight away at with WH Malcolm. It was just meant to happen. It was all I wanted to do “I can’t think about working any place else, really. They’re a good company and they do look after you.”
The first-year apprentice is learning the theory and skills vital for his trade within the classrooms and workshop of the College’s £2.3million HGV Training Centre.
“All vehicles are getting really electrical now, it’s not enough just to know the hand-skills side of the job; you have to really understand the theory. Being a mechanic is definitely changing – there’s a lot more technology. If anyone has a chance of an apprenticeship then I would definitely go for it because they’re not easy to get.
Once I complete my apprenticeship I could go all over the world – it’s a job that’s in demand in Australia and Canada. But I’ve no plans of moving anywhere other than WH Malcolm as I know how lucky I was to get this apprenticeship.”
John’s manager Gavin Summers said:
“John has an excellent attitude to all aspects of the workshop environment. He started in the workshop doing labouring duties and showed an excellent ability to work mechanically. This was recognised and we felt to enhance John’s career and further develop his ability we would put him forward for a modern apprenticeship. John has since passed his HGV licence driven by his own ambition to obtain this qualification and assist the workshop in vehicle recovery. I would think from what John has already achieved he will become an excellent technician and possibly a future manager.”
“Once I complete my apprenticeship I could go all over the world – it’s a job that’s in demand in Australia and Canada."