‘be committed to your work and be disciplined’
Harold Boois is one of the young welders at the Windhoek Vocational Training Centre and says he has ‘learnt fast’ in his second year at the institution. He finds the job exciting and sees himself doing something better with his life once he completes his training. He spoke to Namibian Sun about his experiences so far and what he knows about the trade.
What does a welder do?
Welders perform a number of different jobs which include the different kinds of welding like mig, arc, tig, gas and spot welding as well as soldering and brazing.
Briefly describe your normal day at work
We first inspect our welding equipment and see if it is all in working condition. If we need to replace some parts, for example on a welding machine, we do it before we start with a job. We check if we finished the jobs of the previous day before taking on new jobs. We make sure that the area we work in is safe and also ensure that each person uses the correct machinery for a specific job.
What personality skills do you need for this type of job?
You must in general be a hardworking person. You have to be committed to your work and be disciplined. The discipline applies especially to the safety aspects you have to adhere to all the time because you work with electricity
What are the major challenges in your job?
The major challenges are always the bigger jobs that need more time and precision. When one works on a big project, you are required to be rather focused because if you do a sloppy job, it can also affect the other operations. So, welders must ensure that what they do is correctly done so that the guys such as boiler-makers don’t find it difficult to also perform their tasks. Another challenge is the working conditions as one sometimes works outdoors in the heat for long periods.
What tools or equipment do you use on a daily basis?
The basic tools are a welding helmet, chipping hammers, wire brush, apron, overhead jacket, leather gloves and a measuring tape and of course the welding machine with all its parts.
Do you think it is rewarding enough?
This job is rewarding in many ways. You can perform tasks alone, without any supervision, as it is rather straight-forward. You can also do your own work, that’s if you are not employed by a company or a student at an institution. But overall, it is rewarding because it pays well, depending on what major projects you are working on.
Would you recommend this job to anyone?
Sure, this will be good for any person who likes to work with his hands and loves fixing things. In fact, this country needs skilled labourers and welders. The market is big out there and Namibia is still a developing country, so we need a lot of people who can do industrial work.