Now Mark McDonald is striking out on his own after buying a franchise in a city-based window cleaning company.
The 50-year-old, from Regents Park in Southampton, had spent 23 years with Ford before deciding to set up on his own following redundancy.
He said: “Following a long career at Ford, I viewed redundancy as an opportunity to chase my dream of working for myself.
“I was introduced to Perfect Windows at a job fair organised by Ford and was really impressed with how professional and busy they are.
Launched at the end of 2013, Mark’s business covers most of Southampton. He added: “Most people struggle to find a reputable and reliable window cleaning company; I certainly have over the years.
"What attracted me to running my own business with them is that providing first-rate customer service is just as important to the company as delivering a quality cleaning service.
“It’s an ethos that’s built a loyal and growing customer base for them and I’m looking forward now to getting started and building my own business off the back of their success.
Vin Kennedy, who owns Perfect Windows, said: “We are delighted to welcome Mark to the team.
“Having Mark on board means that we can continue to deliver a great service for our growing number of customers and surge ahead with our expansion plans around the region.”