Mark Smith has been with Vacuum & Atmosphere Services since 2012, progressing to his current position as Operations & Aftermarket Manager. He talks about the appeal of working for the company and the team effort that makes a difference.
How long have you worked for VAS and what are the main responsibilities in your role?
I joined Vacuum & Atmosphere Services in May 2012. My main responsibilities are around our aftermarket services and overseeing the parts department. I assist the service department in general and look after internal and external company invoicing. I also support the sales department, colleagues in the workshop and anyone going to visit clients. Overall, my aim is to make everything work smoothly.
What jobs did you have before you joined VAS?
In this industry I spent 11 years at Ipsen International, based in Birmingham, where I ended up as UK and Ireland sales manager. This gave me a strong understanding of the market and our sector. I was very pleased for the opportunity to join VAS.
What do you enjoy about working for VAS?
I am a self-motivated individual and I want the company to run as smoothly as possible and maximise our place in the market. This is what drives me on. I get involved in both sides of our business, being part of our services around spare parts, the workshop and the service department. For sales I am in the background getting the necessary information together to support our team. I also like to help the younger team members as the develop.
How has VAS changed in your time with the company?
When I started the business was a fairly traditional, medium-sized company. Over recent years we have expanded dramatically in all aspects of the business. We have tried to specialise with dedicated engineers focussed on certain areas like calibration.
We have also brought in a dedicated health and safety manager to focus on processes and quality management, which was a big step forward. I have seen a lot of progressive improvement for VAS. We want to be the best and we have grown to be competitive with the leaders in our marketplace and have grown our reputation to be proud to claim the number one spot.
What are your interests outside of work?
I am a keen walker. When we go on holiday, we like to go somewhere interesting or with coastal walks.
What is the best bit of advice you would give somebody starting at VAS?
We are a professional team and we like to react as quickly as possible to find solutions for customers. Even if we have not got the answer immediately we will work together to find one. With our partnerships with Ipsen, we can draw on our wider network to get the answers. We are expected to do our best. At some places the management team can be remote but here they are approachable and open to helping which makes a big difference. We get things sorted.