C-Job’s growth is clear to see. There is a new office in Rotterdam and the Ukrainian office has just celebrated its first year of business. The number of in-house disciplines and services offered to clients are also growing. While this expansion is undoubtedly positive, it does present the associated challenge of ensuring that the entire team is working not only to the same standards but also with the same mind set. Jeroen Liesveld, General Manager at the company’s head office in Hoofddorp, the Netherlands, talks about the role of training in achieving these two goals.
An informal setting
The first level of training within C-Job is known as the C-Job Academy, during which information is shared amongst colleagues in an informal setting. “This started some years ago in a very low-key way. The drive behind it was the enthusiasm and curiosity that we had as a team,” he says. “For example, if I am working on some construction drawings and the person next to me is working on stability calculations, it is extremely interesting for me to find out more about what they are doing.”
Setting curiosity aside, it must also be said that sharing knowledge in such a way benefits the entire work process. “I can do my work more effectively and more efficiently if I know more about how my colleague is working.”
Jeroen goes on to say that the subjects covered in the C-Job Academy are broad in scope and are not limited to topics related to naval architecture and maritime engineering. “Subjects do not necessarily have to be something that we must know – we also include subjects that are interesting to know. Therefore, we are not limited to technical subjects like computer rendering software or mechanical calculations. We can cover other aspects of the company too with subjects like Python 3.6 programming language, Marketing or Personal Leadership and Coaching.”
The next step
While the informal nature of the C-Job Academy is an ideal skill-sharing platform, it cannot replace more traditional training programmes. “Of course it is nice to teach someone something because of their curiosity, but at a certain moment that person needs more formal goals. This is when we implement official training courses,” Jeroen notes.
This more formal form of training is called the C-Job University, offering subjects like Construction Calculation. These courses do not end with an official diploma but they still carry weight. Sometimes external knowledge is brought in, as was the case with a recent NAPA Steel training course which was given by a NAPA specialist.
Furthermore, these training courses enable a whole group of people to be trained at once. “This achieves the situation where everyone is working in the same direction.”
C-Job University courses are typically held at the company’s head office in the Netherlands, but are still available to other offices. “Using Skype our colleagues at C-Job Nikolayev [Ukraine] can participate and have access to the same material as our Dutch offices. We also record the training sessions so that people can look back at them at a later date.”
Benefits of training
On the subject of training, C-Job Nikolayev Managing Director Andrey Zherebetsky says: “We pay a lot of attention to personal training in the form of internal training programmes, seminars and webinars. It stimulates our cooperation, helps us to share knowledge and exchange skills on joint projects.”
The benefit of these concerted efforts towards training is paying off. In November 2018, in part due to its own training programmes as well as its own competencies and experience, engineering and industrial software supplier AVEVA announced that it had selected C-Job Nikolayev as official Ukraine partner. “After a steadfast tender process – and thanks to our skills and close collaboration with AVEVA – we have signed an agreement for licenses delivery, support, training and implementation of AVEVA Marine Software,” Andrey adds.
Way of working
The final point that Jeroen makes is that training is much more than generating knowledge. “It is also about business culture and giving people the freedom to develop. The type of engineer that we would like to have working here is an open-minded person who is not afraid of the stuff he doesn’t know but is curious to find out.”
C-Job never underestimates the power of its training programmes. After all, the strength of a maritime engineer or naval architect lies in not only in the knowledge that they have but also in the application of their knowledge.