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People of Wyma: Blake Newell

blake newell wyma solutions after sales coordinator

Building strong relationships with our customers is a fundamental part of working at Wyma, and that extends well beyond the initial design and delivery of equipment. Our After Sales and Spare Parts team are often the flagbearers of those relationships, so we spent some time with Blake Newell, After Sales and Spare Parts Coordinator, to learn about his experience on the Wyma team.

Tell us a bit about your background.

I’ve always been interested in making things, and that led me to study for a Diploma in Mechanical Engineering at CPIT (now Ara Institute of Canterbury). I was fortunate to know Mike Anderson (Wyma Team Leader – Line Assembly) and I started coming to Wyma in 2012 to work part-time during breaks while studying to gain experience.

After completing my diploma I transferred to the University of Canterbury to work towards a degree in mechanical engineering, but after a couple of years I found myself missing the more practical applications of engineering that I experienced during my diploma. In the holidays I worked in fabrication helping to make the components that go into our equipment before moving to Vege-Polisher™ assembly (VPA), one of the busiest teams in our workshop, and eventually went into the stores team when they needed people.

Around five years ago I was offered a full-time position. As a fully-fledged team member, I was put back into VPA and did some work in Quality Assurance, until one day our After Sales and Service Manager Ian asked if I was interested in moving into the office to join his team, and I’ve been there ever since.

What does a normal workday look like for you (if such a thing exists)?

Every day is a bit different, but usually I’ll start the day by checking in with emails that have come in overnight. That usually means sorting out spare parts orders, spare parts quotes, dealing with service requests, organizing shipping for customers. There’s a good amount of variety because we have so many different pieces of equipment and each customer’s line is different.

I really enjoy being based in the office, but still make sure I get out onto the factory floor a few times a day to see what’s going on. It’s important to know what the team is working on and just keep up the great relationships I built during my time in fabrication and assembly.

What do you enjoy/find the most rewarding about working at Wyma?

More than anything I really like helping our customers, solving any problems they’re having and making sure they get the right parts and have a good experience with Wyma. I also like working with the people at Wyma, everyone seems happy to be here and helps each other out.

There’s a lot of variety in my job which is great, I get to work on many different projects and types of equipment, and often with different people around the workplace.

What would you be doing if you won the lotto and never had to work again?

I think I’d still be working as I’d probably get a bit bored if I didn’t have something to do, but the idea of having a bit more time to do other things is pretty good. I’d definitely play a bit more golf, I try to play at a few courses around Christchurch once a week or so. There’s even a couple of good courses near the office that I like, so I’d probably spend a bit more time on them.

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