Water makes for exciting, fulfilling work

Francesca Emms News, NZ Apprenticeships, Water

Keenan Gonsalves is a planned water supervisor. He’s been with Watercare for five and a half years. We talked to him about why he loves working in the industry and how Connexis training helped him get to where he is.

I love having a direct impact on water assets to maintain and improve the network.

What is your role with Watercare?

Planned water supervisor

How long have you been with the company?

5½ years

What training have you done with Connexis?

I have completed Infrastructure Works Level 2 and Infrastructure Plant Operation Level 3. I am working on Pipeline Construction Level 4.

How did you come to be in your current role?

Through hard work, determination and not giving up, challenging the status quo and leading by example, not by title.

What do you love most about your role?

Having a direct impact on water assets to maintain and improve the network.

What has been the biggest challenge of your role and your training so far?

Prioritising jobs, as all of them need to be done as soon as possible, and each one of them affects a customer. Finding the time to train as it takes out valuable resources to gain a new skill – however once accomplished, we can achieve far more than what we could.

What would you tell someone else considering a similar role in the water sector?

That genuinely, no two days are the same. It’s exciting, fulfilling work that gives you that ‘feel good’ feeling every time you fix a leak, or perform a connection.

Where would you like to take your career from here?

I would like to control every water site; the direction and every detail, from the implementation, to the parts used, the quality of material provided, the crew skill trained and utilised on what they like to do. I’d like to cross train other divisions to have an emergency team available, aside from the ordinary reactive team, to empower crews to challenge the status quo, and to listen and respond to suggestions from the field. To grow a large tree, you need to nourish the roots.