Next up in our series of meet the team profiles is Jack Wilkinson, Technical Sales Manager at our site in Cramlington, Northumberland. To capture the personalities behind our brand, the names behind the emails and the faces behind the telephone calls, we have caught up with Jack to find out more about him and how his role has evolved during the ongoing global pandemic.
Background and Experience:
I’ve been working in the timber industry since I was 16, when I started as a Trainee Designer at a local truss company. After two years, I then moved into a sales and service role in a contact centre which allowed me to work directly with customers and gain experience in sales. Although I enjoyed the role, I missed the technical aspects of design roles, and when the opportunity arose, I returned to the timber engineering sector with DTE in 2015.
When I began my career as a trainee designer, I was amazed at how much work was involved in turning a set of architectural drawings into a finished roof, from both a design and manufacturing point of view. The most rewarding part of my role is that every time you pass a building you’ve designed timber products for, you feel a sense of pride that your hard work has contributed to a new structure that will be in use for decades to come.
Having worked at DTE for five years now, my current role as Technical Sales Manager is continuously evolving based on the daily needs of the business. I’m the main point of contact for many of our customers, and it’s my responsibility to ensure that they receive first-class service, as our business relies on returning customers. My main goal is to ensure that we meet and exceed the needs of all our customers daily. I’d say that’s the key to being successful in a Sales role at DTE. I work closely with the team of designers in the office, and together we adopt the ‘right-first-time approach’ which is crucial for growing sales in our competitive market.
Adapting to Home Working:
Before the world as we knew it changed as a result of COVID-19, no two days were the same for me, and this is still what I enjoy most about my role, albeit things have changed slightly in recent weeks. Before COVID-19, I could have been office-based dealing with customer enquiries one day, and the next day I could have been on-site measuring a customer’s loft to ensure their new roof trusses were going to fit.
A big part of my role involved travelling to site visits, customer meetings and engaging in-person with the team at Cramlington. Since returning to work after the recent lockdown, my role has evolved in ways that I would have never imaged 6 months ago. I am now working from home full time, which has many positives but also brings its own challenges. However, I’ve been embracing the technology available to us, via Microsoft Teams and WhatsApp. I’m now able to conduct ‘virtual’ site measures with customers. I’m reaping the benefits of virtual meetings and site measures as I save a lot of time that I used to waste driving around the country, and this has allowed me to be a lot more productive in my home ‘office’.
I’m sure like many people, I’ve found that it’s a lot harder to switch off as there’s no clear definition between work life and home life that we would have had previously when leaving the office at night. I’ve tried hard to stay in a structured routine, similar to a typical day in the office as it’s too easy to just keep the laptop switched on into the evening.
Not being physically able to visit customers or measure up any new jobs due to the current social distancing rules has been a very different experience for me but one that I’m adapting to more as the weeks pass.
Hobbies and Interests:
Outside of timber engineering, I’m a new father so my weekends are usually full of activities with my wife and son. I’m also an avid boxing fan so spend a lot of my time watching matches, (more recently virtually) with my friends.