Behind every great team is a great coach. But behind every new EnglandÂ Rugby World Cup shirt, revolutionary golf club or high-performance tennisÂ racket is a team of technicians. Just like Steve and Max.
When they were younger both Steve and Max were more interested in theÂ practical side of things â while Max enjoyed building Airfix model kits, SteveÂ was designing booby traps for his Action Men.
After leaving school, MaxÂ studied a qualification in electronic and electrical engineering technologyÂ at college before continuing to do his HND in electrical engineering. SteveÂ took a different path, joining a small engineering company as an apprenticeÂ before going back to college to study for a CNC programming andÂ machining qualification.
These days, they both work in Loughborough Universityâs SportsÂ Technology Institute. Their work is incredibly varied, and thatâs whatÂ Max loves about it. âI like the fact that a technician role allows you to getÂ involved with variety of tasks. I already had a great passion for sport – thisÂ job allows me to combine that with my passion for engineering.â
The range of projects they work on is huge. Steve and Max provide dayÂ to day support to the academics and students in the Sports TechnologyÂ Institute, as well as working with major sporting brands including Nike,Â Adidas and Speedo to improve equipment and athlete performance.
Most recently, theyâve been involved in projects supporting theÂ development and testing of the Adidas Euro 2016 football and testingÂ the safety of the new British standard cricket helmet. In the run up toÂ the Rio Olympics, Steve and Max have both been working with the TeamÂ GB Paralympic tennis team on how best to transport their specialisedÂ wheelchairs to the Games.
Steve really enjoys the problem solving element of his job, although hisÂ approach is not always orthodox. âSome very simple engineering solutionsÂ have created outstanding results. I have my best ideas and EurekaÂ moments in the bath!â
Both Steve and Max would recommend becoming a technician to youngÂ people. âThe best thing about being a technician is being able to be partÂ of the design, solve some problems and create something really greatÂ for the user. We get to work with all the major sporting brands and someÂ great people â we have the freedom to design, create and see the productÂ through to the very end.”
Max & Steve - Career Pathway
- Max: 1982
Left school with 7 GSE 'O' levels and studied for a BTEC Diploma in Electronic and Electrical Engineering Technology
Went to Teesside Polytechnic to study for a BTEC HND in Electronic Engineering and Computer Technology
First job as an Electronic Engineer designing, building and testing electronic circuits for a small electro/mechanical production company that produced small tablet hardness testing machines
Moved to a small company that built asphalt testing equipment for the civil engineer sector
Joined the Sports Technology Institute at Loughborough University working as a Sports Research Technician
Stats - Engineering technicians
Full Time Employed: 75,904
Part Time Employed: 3,957
Self Employed: 5,937
Total Employed: 85,798
Engineering technicians perform a variety of technical support functions to assist engineers with the design, development, operation, installation and maintenance of engineering systems and constructions.