During my last 5+ years in the scientific industry, I have had the opportunity to serve in several diverse positions. Between my experience in quality, extractions, and service, I have gained a wealth of knowledge through both official and unofficial training. Each of these positions, while different in duties, has required the repeated practice of several skills, including problem solving, communication, and teamwork. While each of my previous positions has tested these abilities, it is my current position as field service engineer that has required me to use them in the most extensive circumstances.
As a field service engineer, it is obvious that I have to be able to use my problem solving skills to apply the training I've received on a product and combine knowledge from multiple sources to resolve issues customers have with their instruments or software. While repairing the products is a large portion of the job, sometimes it is just as important to be able to help customers answer questions they have on a specific technique or even problems that they are having with Agilent, itself. In order to do this, often times it requires reaching out to colleagues who have more specific roles and knowledge.
Customers are typically already in a frustrated state by the time we are asked to reach out to them, so it is important that all communication be clear and supportive. While communication with our customers is clearly vital to our ability to do the job, it is the communication within Agilent that is most necessary for the highest customer satisfaction. There are many specialized roles within the company that allow for a higher level of knowledge in a narrow area, so it is not uncommon to need to reach out to others within the company to help a customer.
It is through this teamwork that I am best able to afford customers a well-rounded experience in an efficient and cost-effective manner. In fact, I find myself reaching out to sales, applications, or even fellow engineers almost daily in order to answer the more specific questions a customer might have about their application or our organization, and relaying this information to the customer in a way they will best understand.
As these skills have been important in every role I've had so far in the scientific industry, I believe that they will continue to serve me in whatever position I achieve next. While my current role of field service engineer has allowed me to best practice and expand these abilities out of all of my roles to date, I believe there is always room for improvement in all areas of life, and expect that my next position will help me in ways I have yet to imagine.