Working as part of one of EMR's cable teams may not immediately spring to mind when thinking of a career in recycling. However, for Catalin Moldovan it is the perfect role.
“I first started working at the Edmonton branch as a temp two years ago. I really liked it, so applied for a permanent role. There’s a really friendly, family-like atmosphere here and we look out for each other.”
This is underscored by the emphasis on Health and Safety training that, Catalin says, forms a key part of every shift.
So, why does he think that he’s been able to thrive in a role crucial to EMR’s sustainable ambitions?
“A lot of it is about my attitude. When I have the opportunity to take on more responsibility or help out my colleagues, I will do it. And, if I make mistakes or something goes wrong, I don’t try and say I know how to do everything – I am not overconfident in that way.”
This sense of team spirit has helped the Edmonton team excel over the past year, processing 2,000 tonnes of cables for recycling – the equivalent of five tonnes of material per shift for each colleague.
“When we beat our target, our supervisors arranged some food and drink and we celebrated the achievement – that’s one of my favourite memories of working with EMR,”
Such has been Catalin’s success in his role that he has now trained to work with the branch’s state-of-the-art granulator. The equipment helps separate the plastic coating from cables, allowing EMR to efficiently extract – and ultimately recycle – the copper inside.
It is the crucial role that Catalin and his team play in separating these cables which means the vital materials found inside can continue their life cycle rather than ending up in landfill.
Although Catalin is still getting used to his new role working with the granulator, EMR’s focus on training and career progression for its staff means that he’s already considering what other skills and experiences he may gain in the future:
“Some of my colleagues have already gained their operating licence for the 360 material handler. That is something which would give me another skill and could potentially be my next step with the company.”
Making his long-term future with EMR and in the UK, is not necessarily how Catalin – who was born in Romania and grew up in Spain – expected things to turn out:
“When I first came to the UK, I was doing a lot of different jobs as a temp and I didn’t think I would stay. My role at EMR has helped me build a life here and I’ve been happy working in the UK for over four years now.”
And, while Catalin admits that the weather doesn’t quite match up to what he was used to growing up, he’s even found reasons to love the English rain:
“I love being outside in the UK – you don’t see green countryside like it in Spain.”