Tuesday, 25 September 2018 10:56

Sizwe hits 40 years at WearCheck

1978 was the year when Sizwe Ndlovu joined the WearCheck family, 40 years ago.

At that time, WearCheck had begun initially as a soil analysis company, which later changed to oil analysis in 1976. So, at the then fledgling oil analysis company, Sizwe began his career as stores assistant, where he was tasked with keeping the stores neat and tidy and clean.

Today, and as the company has grown, he is now in charge of the store room, as well as holding many other responsibilities, which include looking after all the chemicals used in the laboratory. He re-orders chemicals and gas cylinders when stocks get low and fills all the machines with chemicals. Sizwe has completed a course in the control of Hazardous Materials and Basic Fire Fighting training.

The only employee who has been at WearCheck longer than Sizwe is laboratory supervisor Vigie Manikum, who is in her 42nd year with the company.  And, keeping it in the family, Sizwe’s brother Wellington Ndlovu has also reached an important milestone this year – he celebrates 35 years with WearCheck.

It doesn’t end there - there are also four employees who have spent an impressive three decades working at WearCheck this year – Sheila Naidoo, Prinda Narasi, Lyn Gengan and Sheila Moodley all clocked up 30 years in the Pinetown office.

Managing direction Neil Robinson expressed gratitude for long term dedication from staff. ‘I offer sincere congratulations to Sizwe Ndlovu for staying with us for 40 years, and to Wellington Ndlovu, for being here for 35 years.

‘Staff who remain for long periods really get to know our business, and our customers, inside and out. This reduces the need for retraining, and keeps processes running smoothly, which in turn boosts our customer service and helps maintain WearCheck as a successful operation. Thank you to all long-serving members of our family. We feel honoured as, these days, there are not many businesses who can boast about having as many long-time staff members as we do.’

WearCheck’s storeman Sizwe Ndlovu has worked at the company for 40 years

Stores assistant Wellington Ndlovu has worked at WearCheck for 35 years

Senior laboratory technician Sheila Naidoo has been with WearCheck for 30 years

Quality administrator Prinda Narasi has spent 30 years with WearCheck

Customer support officer Lyn Gengan has worked at WearCheck for 30 years

DP admin clerk Sheila Moodley has been employed by WearCheck for 30 years

Published in Blog
Tuesday, 26 January 2016 12:56

Vigie arrives at 40 year milestone

Four decades, 40 years, 14 600 days…whichever way you view it, it’s a jolly long time…and that is how long our stalwart WearCheck lab supervisor, Vigie Manikum, has been with the company.

On reaching the big milestone in November 2015, Vigie received congratulations from colleagues and friends both locally and around the globe, in recognition of her dedication and outstanding service to the company.

Managing Director Neil Robinson summed it up in his note to all staff, ‘Vigie, it has been a pleasure working with you all these years. Your contribution to the ever-smooth running of the laboratory has been immeasurable and I know there are a significant number of current employees, including myself, whose careers started in the lab, who appreciate the support and guidance you offered during their time there.’

So how did it all start for WearCheck’s longest-serving employee?

“Well, says Vigie, ‘I finished matric at 16, and was one of eight siblings. At 17, I started helping my dad in the laboratory, where he worked at Natal Canvas. In 1975, my mom saw an ad in The Mercury one day. We called, I was interviewed by Gary Brown on the Thursday and by Friday, I had the job at WearCheck!’

Vigie’s career at WearCheck began as an office worker, back in the pre-computer days, where reports and test results were manually typed up on a typewriter. With only Vigie, Lesley Crawford and Gary Brown in the office, everyone had many tasks to do to keep the then McCraw Laboratories going.

1976 saw the company name change to WearCheck. Vigie has seen WearCheck grow from a one-room operation to the multi-national operation it has become today.

Rising through the ranks, Vigie became junior laboratory assistant (1978), a senior lab assistant (1982) then laboratory co-ordinator (1992) and finally laboratory supervisor (2000).

For the senior managers who mentored Vigie throughout her career, she has nothing but gratitude and respect. And this mentorship has filtered down to Vigie’s own subordinates, many of whom wrote notes of congratulations such as this particular one (who now works as a diagnostician at another company):

‘Congratulations on reaching this milestone, you have been the backbone of the lab over the years and for many more in the future.  You have inspired your staff and motivated them way beyond the working environment. You have been a marvellous mentor.’

Looking back over the decades, Vigie insists she has never once needed an alarm clock, as she is still excited to get to work. ‘Although not without its trials and tribulations, I have really and truly relished my career at WearCheck. My brain is on autopilot – when I wake up, it tells me “Go to WearCheck!”’ she laughs.

True to her generous spirit, Vigie organised commemorative chocolates to give to every staff member in celebration of reaching her 40 year milestone with the company recently.

Published in Blog