Phil Brooke

Apprenticeship Recruiter

I am task orientated and enjoy solving problems in a structured way.

What lead you to work for PETA?

After leaving college I undertook an access to engineering course with PETA in the mid 80’s. This was at the beginning of the revolution that computer controls brought to the machining sector. After a programming course at Bridgeport’s Leicestershire, I completed my training with a local company BL Barnes. I subsequently worked for nearly 20 years for subcontracting companies before starting a second career in training with PETA.

What is your role at PETA and what drives you to what you do?

My experience working as an engineer in competitive subcontracting environments meant that using facts and being completely objective when making decisions was my default setting. I found transitioning into a white-collar role difficult. Luckily, when I started at PETA, I had a good mentor and an effective people manager to guide me.

At PETA I have worked as an Engineering Assessor, Lead Assessor and for the last 7 years as an employer engagement professional. I am passionate about STEM careers and Engineering in particular. Working with great employers to ensure that we create the next generation of professional engineers is important to me.

What knowledge or experience to you draw upon for your role?

My time in engineering covered a variety of responsibility’s, designing manufacturing flow processes, tooling and fixtures as well as writing programmes, specifying machinery and leading teams of professional engineers. During this time, I became more resilient dealing with pressure, improved my focus on productive outcomes and learnt to appreciate the value that dedicated professionals can offer. Working in training as a second career, I have seen apprentices that I have recruited and worked with become managers and senior figures within their business. If we can claim any credit for this it is that we provided the opportunity and foundation for this to happen, the real reward is seeing these young people become independent and succeed.

How do you approach your role on a day-to-day basis? What skills are required.

Working with a range of employers is interesting, it is a window into the wider world of engineering. I enjoy speaking to people about their businesses and learning about new technology. They all offer an opportunity to learn and develop. Listening to what clients’ problems are and being able to offer solutions that they see value in is key to this role. Being open minded, taking note of key drivers and requirements and offering achievable solutions is the only way success can be achieved. In my opinion, engineering must train the next generation of engineers now, or the evaporation of skills from the workplace will mean that shrinkage of the sector is inevitable.

What are you passionate about outside of work?

Spending time with my family, vintage scooters, classic cars and Arsenal football club. I enjoy keeping fit and have also been a Pilates practitioner for 15 years.

What are your personal values, and what is important to you?

I am task orientated and enjoy solving problems in a structured way. I like to learn about new technology, I am fascinated by space travel and interested in cosmology and physics. Within my working world, I like hitting targets but do not value recognition for doing this. I guess it’s the engineer in me, I am mainly interested in what is the next problem or task that I need to do.