Studied: Apprenticeship in Signmaking at Viewtec Signs
Signmakers might not be one of the first people to come to mind when listing key pandemic workers but that’s exactly what professionals like Mark Dilks became in 2020. As part of Viewtec Signs, Mark and his colleagues prepared road signage to support construction projects that continued to progress throughout lockdown.
“Chevrons and Martins are two of our biggest clients,” said Mark. “It made sense for them to take advantage of the quieter roads and instigate more maintenance and repair projects. It’s meant that my colleagues and I have been producing and dispatching signs non-stop.
“Because of this, I learned on the job a lot more quickly than I might have done. I’ve thrived on the pressure of meeting deadlines too.”
Mark now has over 18 months of signmaking industry experience having previously worked as an ink technician for Cartridge World. Due to a shift in the demand and consumption of ink-based products and services, he had started looking at other job opportunities. So, when he faced redundancy, he was able to start his new career shortly afterwards.
“Training on the job and studying has suited me,” said Mark. “I’ve been happy to learn more about the signmaking from a wider perspective in terms of quality standards and the background on traffic management signage and legislation.”
He continued: “The apprenticeship study and assessment process works well. Everything is online and you start by going through the basics, then look at things in more in-depth.”
In addition to developing his skills academically, Mark has been branching out across different teams and departments.
“Having that versatility means I can help take the pressure off colleagues if they’re inundated and could slow down the process,” continued Mark.
With one eye on the future, Mark is open to being able to complete additional apprenticeship study units. This is along with the possibility of working across departments such as graphics, printing, weaving and packaging.
“When you enjoy doing your job, it doesn’t feel like work,” added Mark. “This is something that drives me to keep learning more about our different operations and continue to evolve.
“It just goes to show what an exceptional industry this is.”