Working abroad is a great way to develop language skills, communication skills and other work based skills. It is a good way to immerse yourself in a new culture and give you an insight into your industry from a different cultural perspective, plus it look’s great on your CV! Our new short series “Operators Overseas” gives an insight into working as an operator overseas. We have been in touch with some operators who are happy to share their experiences of working overseas.
The first in our series is from Alasdair Macintyre who travelled to Sierra Leone:
Name: Alasdair Macintyre
Job Title: Supervisor/Heavy Plant Operator
Q.1. Where are you originally from?
A. 1. I am originally from Scotland
Q.2 Where have you worked overseas?
A.2. Sierra Leone
Q.3 How did you travel to the country you worked in; how long did it take?
A.3. I flew, 1 hour to Heathrow and then 6.5 hours after that.
Q.4. What was your job role and responsibilities?
A.4. Excavator/dozer operator
Q.5. How did you hear about the vacancy abroad?
A.5. I was working with the company in the UK, they invited me to Africa.
Q.6. What papers were required for you to be able to work internationally? (E.g. Passport, visa, etc.)
A.6. Passport and visa
Q.7. What additional operator/driver license/qualifications did you need to have?
*This is at the discretion of the company you work for, some require additional qualifications to UK based qualifications.
Q.8. How did the rate of pay differ from the UK?
A.8. It was over double the rate of pay in the UK at that time
Q.9. How was your overall experience of working overseas?
Q.10. Would you recommend the opportunity to work overseas to other operators?
Q.11. What advice would you give someone who would like to work overseas?
A.11. I would recommend they go in with an open mind.
Q.12. How was your work:life balance overseas?
A.12. It weighed heavily on work, 7 weeks on, 3 weeks off work pattern.
Q.13. Can you describe your accommodation? Was it provided for you?
A.13. Bunker bins and hotels, all accommodation and food was provided.
Q.14. Were you able to easily adapt to the culture of the country you were working in?
Q.15. What is your most and least treasured memory from working overseas?
A.15. I enjoyed all of it!
Q.16. What was most surprising/something you did not expect about working overseas?
A.16. The heat took some getting used to!
Q.17. Did you have many opportunities to travel around the country while you were there?
A.17. Not really
Q.18. Is there anything else you would like to add?
A.18 I loved it and would go back in a heartbeat!
Up next: Kenny Milne who travelled to Australia and New Zealand https://www.scottishplantoperators.co.uk/news/operators-overseas-australia/