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Pilot transitional training scheme is success for MAN Truck & Bus UK.

Former REME engineer lands first job with MAN dealer.

A 26-year-old dad of two has landed his first job in civvie street after taking part in a pilot transitional training scheme with leading truck manufacturer MAN Truck & Bus UK.

Under the pilot project Nick Hawkins, a former Lance Corporal with the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME), was placed at the WG Davies dealership in Cardiff where he impressed bosses so much he was offered a job as a technician.

Nick, a father of two from the Valleys, was reaching the end of his time with REME and attended a jobs fair organized through MOD Lyneham, where he learned about the MAN scheme.

Nick, who has served in Germany, Afghanistan and Belize, said: “I spotted the MAN stand at the fair and went over to find out all about it. I was nearing the end of my 12-month transition phase and was fortunate to be able to take part straight away.

“There are a number of military vehicles supplied by MAN, so I do have some knowledge of them, but working in a commercial environment is very different.

“The training I had the through the MAN Military Transition Programme has shown me how things differ. I am thrilled to have been given this opportunity and I am looking forward to developing my skills in the commercial world.

“It is also great for my family, it’s regular hours and my wife is pleased be-cause it’s an extra pair of hands to look after our three year old and five year old.”

Gareth Lewis, depot manager at WG Davies, added: “We were a little apprehensive about the way it would work, but we took two of the people involved in the scheme and they fitted in well.

“Nick was closer to the end of his transitional phase and was looking for work immediately and we could clearly see his potential.

“He has shown great aptitude and we can see he has potential to develop within the role. He has a very good attitude and is willing to learn.”

Trish Newman, for MAN said: “REME’s training unit at Lyneham is close to us in Wiltshire and we thought as a company there would be a good opportunity to link up and see if we can provide training and help find jobs for military personnel leaving the service. We believe it’s very important to support our troops, and this is a great opportunity to do so.

“This was our pilot project and we decided we would take four candidates and after a week in Swindon two were sent to MAN Bristol and two to WG Davies in Cardiff.

“They were each awarded their IRTEC qualification and then they were learning about working as a technician in a commercial market including how to fill in job cards, standard repair times, charging and liaising with customers, which is completely different to their military experience, where they have experienced MAN’s technical and diagnostics systems in a very practical situation.

“It was a fantastic to hear that at the end of the scheme Nick was offered a permanent job with WG Davies. He was close to the end of his service and it has afforded him a great opportunity. The other three candidates have a little way to go before their transition period ends, but they have all been asked to contact us again closer to their leave period to explore how we can help.

“The pilot scheme has been such a success it is something we are looking to roll out. We hope to run two MAN military transition schemes a year in the future, focusing on our REME neighbours at Lyneham.”