ITP Apprentice of the Year winner 2014 Josh Fowler is officially the first ITP member to gain RITTech status. We asked him about his experience and his hopes for the future…
What is your current role and do you have any future plans for your career?
I’m currently working for CenturyLink, a global telecommunications services provider, in the European Technical Support Centre (ETSC). My team provide support to customers performing triage, diagnosis and resolution of potential service interruptions on data products across multiple networks spanning the globe.
I plan to continue my development in the ETSC to gain management and organisational skills, improving on areas where I need professional development. This will build on my technical skills to give me the tools to move into project management and future leadership roles.
Can you tell us a bit about your career background and how you got into telecoms?
When I originally left school in 2008 I started out in the construction industry as a plumber, but on the back of the recession in 2009 I lost my job. It was then I decided to have a career change and originally started in telecoms as a fibre cable tester/jointer. I then joined the European Technical Service Centre at Level 3 Communications, now CenturyLink.
When did you become RITTech registered and how did you find the online process?
I was officially registered on 15th March 2018. The online process was extremely simple and easy to follow. I found writing the statements within a word document beneficial to adhere to the word count and edit my answers to provide as much detail and evidence as possible.
What does being RITTech registered mean to you?
Being registered proves that you can work and perform to a set industry standard acknowledged by a professional body. I feel privileged to be a part of the RITTech registration and happy knowing that the hard work I continue to do is recognised at an industry level. It proves to your employer you care about the work that you do by working to set standards and is a great recognition for yourself.
I believe that you are able to change / add to your speciality subjects throughout your career as long as you work to the competencies set out by the professional registration, which is of great benefit if you wish to add to / change your skill set.
Why is it important that we have a recognised standard in the IT & telecoms industry?
Having a set standard within the industry sets the bar for the quality of service provided. As IoT (the internet of things) continues to grow, having standards to overlook the evolution of the digital age becomes imperative for data to be safe, secure and easily accessible by the correct users. Without standards to work and adhere too, it’s easy to see how things could go wrong. Using a plumbing analogy, you wouldn’t have a plumber work on a house boiler without being Corgi registered to prove the competency of working to a set standard. Looking at it from a customer perspective, they can feel confident knowing the person completing the job is a professional with industry experience and knowledge.
What would you say to other technicians that are not yet RITTech registered?
Think about registering. Stand out from the crowd by proving you are working to industry standards and to a quality that proves you are a valuable colleague / employee / contractor – wherever you work. It provides you with confidence knowing what you are capable of and being recognised at industry level.
How do you feel about the fact that your company has got on board with RITTech?
It’s great that the company has got on board with the registration. Not only does it provide a personal gain for me, but for a company to have employees working to an industry standard level is beneficial. It shows the company is committed to the service they provide by working to and above the set benchmark within the industry.
What did winning Apprentice of the Year a few years ago mean to you?
Winning Apprentice of the Year in 2014 really propelled my career to the next level, and I have gone from strength to strength. I am seen as a senior member within my department and it has given me the confidence to seek new challenges and I want to continually develop and learn new skills. I’m extremely grateful for the support provided to myself by CenturyLink and my managers who mentored me throughout my apprenticeship, which led to the award. I’m also grateful for the support from the ITP throughout my career so far; I can see our relationship continuing to grow in the future.
Find out more about RITTech.