Currently completing his second co-op term at Softchoice, Robby Middlebrook shares how Softchoice’s company values have led to endless learning opportunities and an engaging work environment.
What is your role as a co-op, and tell us what you do at Softchoice?
My job title currently is VOIP/Networking Managed Service Technician. However, the nice thing about Softchoice is that the title has not been limiting in the slightest. Initially, I was drafting reports, processing changes in various customers’ call management systems, and making changes to our monitoring system. Recently, I have also been given a project testing new software to implement for our voice clients. This is an end to end project in which I am creating, and working within a testing environment all while writing a Java program to amplify the program’s capabilities.
“I appreciate the fact that I am able to work with various technologies, not just VOIP.”
What excites you about coming to work every day?
Two things at Softchoice have made my days far more enjoyable. The first is the people working at Softchoice. People at Softchoice are very helpful, kind and friendly, which makes it easier to get up in the morning knowing that you’ll enjoy talking and working with your co-workers and supervisor.
The second is that I rarely feel unchallenged by the work and I know there is always an opportunity to gain new knowledge. Rarely have I felt that some part of my day didn’t have something new and interesting I had to actively learn to accomplish. Every job you take should pay you twice; once with money and once with the things that you learn. My supervisor, Ron, has been good at making sure I’m paid with both.
At Softchoice, we strive to live by our values every day. In your role, how do you see these values come to life?
The value I’ve seen the most at Softchoice as a co-op has been “We Grow Our People First.” There has been a consistent effort during both my last co-op term here and my current co-op term to allow me access to technology that I am interested in learning more about. This is something I really value personally.
Secondly, “We Take Care of Each Other,” is a value consistently in play at Softchoice. The company has gone out of its way to ensure that employees are comfortable in their roles via work from home policies, dog-friendly offices, adequate training, etc. Having a culture of empathy is important because being a part of Softchoice’s Managed Services division can often be a naturally stressful endeavor. I think Softchoice has done an admirable job in managing those stresses through this core value.
If you had one piece of advice for a new co-op, what would it be and why?
If you feel unchallenged in your role, or want to explore other aspects of your company, be sure to communicate this to your supervisor. Most co-op placements are what you make of them and that’s especially true of Softchoice. Softchoice has a flexible work environment that will challenge you if you want it to. You only have to ask.
Learn about another co-op’s experience as a Marketing Coordinator at Softchoice.