The three years I’ve been at Intel have just flown by. Although I’m a qualified chemical engineer, taking a Shift Engineer role just felt right to me and I haven’t looked back since.
My role is as a Shift Engineer with Intel. It’s a varied role where you never know what’s going to happen next. I mirror my shift with a buddy doing twelve hours each to ensure tools are running correctly. If they go down, we’ll develop a plan to get them back up again as soon as possible. I also integrate tasks with our Shift 1 team – who do more of a regular Monday to Friday shift. They can leave us tasks to complete as part of our more flexible shift work. Because it’s twelve hours, we do a month of days and a month of nights each. Then we work three days on and four days off, or vice versa – within those months.
I’m actually a qualified chemical engineer from University of Limerick. However, I didn’t really think about it stopping me going for a role like this. To me, a lot of the processes are very similar. But whereas chemical engineering is more focused on the production of drugs, here I’m just focusing on a different kind of material. So, in applying for the position, I wasn’t put off by any lack of relevance. In fact, since I’ve joined I’ve found a lot of what I learned has been relevant. The role appealed to me so taking it felt like the right choice.
I’m delighted I made that decision. I’m here three years now and that time has flown by. I’ve learned a lot from it and love working with my team. Like any graduate, I found the first weeks to be daunting. But I was teamed up with a more senior engineer who helped me through my first year. And everyone was so helpful in answering questions or telling me what routes to go down for help. Now I’m much more comfortable dealing with downtime or knowing where to find assistance to help solve problems.
I like the shift work because it suits my lifestyle for now. I love to travel and the shift days off mean I don’t need to take as many holidays as a Monday to Friday role would require. When I’ve finished my shift I’m finished too, so no having to respond to things like emails on my downtime. I really feel I get a nice work/life balance.
I’ve also gotten to travel with Intel – a vendor trip to Dallas – which I enjoyed enormously and learned a lot from. And when Covid-19 is over I’ll be looking out for opportunities to travel the world with Intel as much as outside of work.
In the future I’d like to see myself working on the more regular Shift 1 team – just to experience being a bit more hands-on process wise. But I’m very happy where I am. The culture here is nice – we collaborate, and we have a laugh, but we also know when to get serious.