Employee Focus: Warren, IT Manager
Our Employee Focus' are designed to give you a sneak peak into what it's like to work at Torque and the huge range of roles available within the business. With over 1100 employees, in different roles, sites and locations, they all have something interesting to share. If you're interested in a career at Torque, visit our careers page and let us know! This month we spoke to Warren to see how he became IT Manager at Torque and why it's important to keep an eye on road signs after a late finish.
Warren has been working for Torque for almost 5 years and he is responsible for implementing and maintaining Torque’s infrastructure. The role is crucial to the Torque business, our in-house tech teams provides 24/7 support to our customers, and our systems working effectively and safely play an important part in our customer-Torque relationship.
What’s your role and can you tell us a little about it?
My role as IT Manager means I’m responsible for implementing and maintaining Torque’s infrastructure. This includes servers, PC’s, printers, telephony, routers, switches, Wi-Fi and business software whilst also maintaining the security which plays a big part in todays world from Firewalls to endpoints. I’m also responsible for the IT Service Desk dealing with issue tickets raised from all areas of the business.
Along with this I monitor the business’s operational requirements, research strategies and technical solutions to build the most cost-effective and efficient system to achieve these goals.
How long have you worked for Torque?
I’m approaching my 5th year of service in July.
What do you love/enjoy most about your job?
The diversity of the work that I do means that no day is like any other, I am always driven to better our systems which also makes me feel good when the day is done. Along with this I enjoy the challenges and pressure in the fast-paced, growing environment at Torque, trouble shooting and problem solving certainly plays a big part in my role.
How did you end up in your current role?
I had just finished a 2-year contract in my previous role and was looking forward to having the whole summer off for the first time in my career. The following week, on the Wednesday I received a call from an agency saying a business needed someone quickly to take on a challenging role and of course, I love a good challenge. I went for an interview on the Thursday and started the job on the Friday.
Torque have just taken over a new site in Castleford, you’ve played an integral role in getting the site ready for business. What does a project like that entail? (please give details of the type of thing you’ve been working on, setting up etc.)
Luckily, in the 5 years I’ve been with Torque we’ve managed to get standards and structures in place so taking on a new site was something I felt very comfortable with. The steps involved include planning the fibre installations with BT and Virgin, installing the internal fibre work and cabinets and configuring the routers, switches and Wi-fi ready for the warehouse to operate. The whole thing was up and running within 2 weeks.
How important is getting IT systems right for Torque and its customers?
Absolutely vital. Everything we do has to be reliable, robust and most of all resilient. Torque has grown as a business within the 5 years I have been here and our aim is to achieve 99.9% system uptime.
What invaluable thing have you learnt in your role? (Can be about yourself, or skills you’ve acquired etc.)
To have a robust disaster recovery plan in place. The IT systems at Torque are critical for operational performance and business continuity.
What’s the one piece of advice you could give someone who wanted to do your job or get into IT?
My main advice is to be hungry for technology in a world that changes so quickly. Enjoy what you do and always expect the unexpected. IT is a good environment to be in when things are running smoothly but when things go wrong be prepared to resume normal service under pressure from the business.
How do you think Torque go the extra mile for their customers?
I feel Torque as a business offer flexibility for customers that require a high level of personalisation. From an IT perspective each client has changing needs and we adapt to meet them those requirements in a timely manner.
Can you tell us the funniest or most interesting thing to happen to you at work?
I’ve been lucky to work in various parts of the world but spent quite a bit of time in London. One of the projects I was on needed implementing in 4 days meaning early mornings and very late nights. After successful implementation it was a long drive back to Manchester. I stopped at Oxford services for some refreshments and jumped back in the car. Eventually I reached the M25 and thought who moved that up North. I was back in London and I thought I had managed to keep it secret…. until now!
Can you tell us a fun fact about yourself?
I’m seriously scared of spiders and wasps. People see me at work as cool, calm and collected but when face to face with a spider, I’m running around and shouting for my wife.
If you could invite 3 people (alive or dead) to a dinner party you were hosting, who would they be, and why would you invite them?
Sir Alex Ferguson – For the obvious reason of managing the best team in the world but also to discuss leadership and strategy.
Arnold Schwarzenegger – I had a love for the films of the 80’s but would love to chat about how someone can dedicate their life to something they have a passion for.
Elvis Presley – The king of rock n roll but what was really going on in his head at the height of success to drive him to such a decline.