Apprenticeship Week: Martin Findlay

6th March 2020

Say hello to Martin, one of our RGU Graduate Apprentices. Martin works fulltime as Capex Procurement Buyer within the supply chain team, whilst working towards achieving his BA (Hons) in Business Management. Joining Expro as a storeperson, Martin developed a keen interest in the procurement side of the business and jumped at the chance to join the Graduate Apprenticeship to help develop his career further.

  • Tell us a little bit about your position and responsibilities at Expro

I am Capex buyer at Expro and work closely with the Subsea project teams, procuring all goods and services relating to my appointed projects to help deliver Subsea Landing Strings to the global market.

  • How have you evolved from your first day at Expro until now?

Having started my career in Expro in the warehouse as a storeperson, I believe I have evolved significantly since my first day. I learned a lot during the five years I worked in stores, but I felt I needed a change and a new challenge so I lept at the opportunity to apply for the buyer role when it became available.

I gained an interest in procurement through interactions with the buyers on projects and talking with them to learn more about the job. Once I was confident I would be able to apply myself to buying, it was just waiting on the right opportunity and vacancy to become available within Expro. It was just a matter of if I would be interviewed and how the supply chain managers would view someone internally applying for a job in procurement with no buying experience, but, I was confident in my ability and the attributes I had to offer the team and was able to secure the job.

  • What made you apply for the apprenticeship?

I initially saw the Graduate Apprenticeship back in 2018 when I was relatively new to the procurement team and thought this would be an excellent opportunity to expand my knowledge of the business environment. I did not feel the time was right in 2018, so I didn’t apply for the course and forgot all about it. One year on, my manager highlighted the opportunity again at our weekly meeting, I thought if I didn’t go for it now and apply myself, then I never will.

The process was simple; I showed my interest in the course with my line manager and submitted a completed application form, to HR, who handled the dealings with the university on my behalf. RGU organised a face-to-face meeting to go through the expectations from their side and the Expro team were able to answer questions or concerns I had.

  • What do you enjoy most/least about your job?

Like any other job, there are moments where nothing seems to go right and I can’t see a resolution to solve an issue. However, sitting back and analysing different scenarios and involving the support of my team helps me to develop an alternative approach to solve the problem and successfully meet the expectations of the requestor.

  • What is something surprising you’ve learned?

As the course is in business management, I have been motivated to look into areas of Expro I usually wouldn’t have been exposed to. It is amazing the amount of information that exists on the internal portal that is relevant to my course, and the people I have met for additional support have been forthcoming and very helpful.

  • How do you feel you have benefited from the graduate apprenticeship scheme?

I feel I have gained more confidence in expressing my ideas and my own ability. The scheme has also helped to expand my knowledge of Expro as well as gaining a greater understanding of the complexity of what is involved in directing the organisation on a successful path.

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