Working on for as Long as Possible

Age is but a number for Senior Lift Technician Eric Tan, and with a strong passion in the job he does, he doesn’t want to call it quits anytime soon.

“As long as I can work and the company needs me, I will continue working,” said Senior Lift Technician Eric Tan, who has been in the industry for 40 years.

It had been his off day, and the 64-year-old was enjoying some quality family time at home.

However, when his son arrived home with news that someone might be stuck in the lift, Eric immediately sprang into action.

The Scenario: A family of three was stuck in the lift. Help was supposedly on the way, but it was half an hour overdue.

Without hesitation, Eric’s 40 years of experience maintaining lifts came to good use as he went to work, rendering assistance to the stranded family. Luckily for them, the lift was levelled to the landing and he did not need any tools to open the lift’s landing door.

With some coordinated effort from the family, they managed to pry open the lift door.

He said such moments make his job fulfilling.

Age Is Just a Number

Day to day, Eric and his 22-year-old partner Liang Wei Kang look after more than 80 lifts in the south-west area of Singapore. Together, they service an average of five lifts each day.

Eric has been working for Chevalier for the past 10 years. Prior to that, he was with another lift company for 30 years until he was retrenched due to restructuring.

“When I first started in this industry, I told myself that I will be in this for a long time,” he said.

He may be 64, but Eric possesses the physicality and tenacity of a man in his 20s.

The job requires him to climb into a lift shaft, and even balance on a metal beam only about a foot wide with his safety gear on. That may sound daunting to you and me, but Eric takes it in his stride. He can still do whatever his younger counterpart does, or even more, thanks to his experience.

Eric is one of the oldest lift technicians currently working for Chevalier and is glad that he has found his calling in this ever-demanding industry. However, to remain employable, he has had to keep abreast of technological advancements in the industry.

His company sent him for a new course on lift brakes a few months ago. In fact, he has attended over 20 courses over his 40-year career, to keep updated with changes in the industry.

A Great Mentor

Eric works on as his mentee Wei Kang checks on the circuits. To Wei Kang, Eric is not just a mentor, but also partner and friend (Photo Source: NTUC ThisWeek)

With his decades of experience, Eric mentors new lift technicians as well. His partner, Wei Kang, joined the company two years ago without any prior experience. Thanks to courses and Eric’s mentorship, he is very competent in his job now.

“Eric has taught me everything I know. I learned a lot from his invaluable experience, and he is also a good mentor,” he shared.

With the re-employment age set to go up from 65 to 67 on 1 July 2017, Eric will be able to continue doing what he loves.

He has no plans for retirement and wants to continue working for as long as he can.

Share this story: