Honeywell Field Service Engineer (FSE) Ed Leadley knows exactly what it’s like to work in a busy corporate flight department. Before joining Honeywell in 1993, Ed spent close to two decades as an aircraft mechanic and director of maintenance (DOM), including a stint at his first job for a seven aircraft fleet at MARCOR Flight Operations, supporting Montgomery Ward and Container Corporation of America.
“After all these years I still think like a DOM,” he said. “I know how frustrating it can be to have an aircraft with a mechanical problem when your CEO is scheduled to fly. You just want to get the problem fixed and the airplane back in service as quickly in possible. My job is to solve problems for our customers and I strive for first-contact resolution.”
That’s the mindset Ed takes to work every day. From his base near Chicago O’Hare, he manages calls from Honeywell customers anywhere in the world. Most have questions about auxiliary power units (APUs) or other mechanical systems and Ed is an expert for investigating the problem and coming up with the right solution. And quickly.
“We’re able to do a lot over the phone and by email,” he said. “We can talk the customer through the troubleshooting process and help them through the easy fixes, like downloading new controller software, which often solves the problem. I like to see things happen in just a couple of hours and to close cases the same day whenever possible.”
After 25 years with Honeywell, Ed has encyclopedic knowledge of APUs, which are a signature product for Honeywell. He also can tap into a strong network of Honeywell engineers around the world. “If the problem is something new to me or if it’s out of my expertise, I usually know a person who has the answer, or that person knows a person I can call on. My job is to rally the troops and get the right answer in the customer’s hands quickly.”
Ed recently helped an aircraft manufacturer solve a minor APU software mystery. Something caused the unit to reset itself under certain conditions, mystifying the customer’s technical team. It didn’t take Honeywell long to determine that the automatic reset was an intentional design feature so users wouldn’t have to turn off the master switch to reset the system. Problem solved.
“One of the things I enjoy most about this job is the variety,” Ed said. “You never know what the next call will bring. I like working with my customers and relieving their stress. I answer the phone as ‘Honeywell,’ but I consider the person as a friend who needs a helping hand.”