Careers in Hardware – Brooks Timber and Building Supplies

Since the launch of Hardware Jobs, Ireland’s first and only hardware industry-specific job board website, HAI has beenhighly active in promoting long-term career opportunities in the hardware industry to students, school leavers and jobseekers alike, and going by feedback from visitors at careers fairs like Ireland Skills Live and from career guidance counsellors the interest in the sector is higher than ever.

In the March/April issue of The Hardware Journal we spoke to Rafal Jopek, salesman and consultant with Brooks Timber & Building Supplies, whose hard work and ambition saw him advance through different roles within Brooks:

Q: What were the main ‘career decision’ milestones in your life so far?

I studied and worked in precision mechanics in Poland so I suppose my first major milestone was the decision to move to Ireland and to join the hardware industry. Moving from a general operative, forklift driver position into a sales role was a big decision and hopefully will also prove to be a milestone.

How did you go about getting your current job?

My friend knew that I would like to work in the construction industry and informed me that there was a chance to get a job in Brooks, I immediately provided my CV to Dave Higgins (Brooks Branch Manager). A short time after my interview I was hired. Dave chose me because he liked my approach to work and to the client who is the main foundation of our business.

Describe a typical working day.

Every day looks similar, efficiency and quick customer service always come first. I deal with shipping orders and special orders, and offer advice to customers who are not sure what materials they should use. We are a well-coordinated team who help and support each other in every situation.

What are your main tasks and responsibilities?

I need to maintain knowledge of the products we sell and ensure that we have the products the customer needs and
quickly organise and deliver that material. My main task is to make sure that the customer leaves the store with everything they need to start work, and ensure that they are 100% satisfied and that they will come back to us again.

What are the main challenges?

Being up to date is the biggest challenge. Every day new products are created in the construction industry that improve quality and speed up construction processes.

Have you undertaken, or do you plan to undertake any further training as part of your job?

I completed several courses on wood – application and specifications. I participated in a JUNCKERS course and
currently I am on a VELUX course. I would like to take part in further courses and up my skills to make me an even better and more valuable employee.

What have been the most rewarding events in your career so far?

It is satisfying that every day of my work I end with the awareness that I could help every client I talked to. I feel proud that my work is noticed.