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Proud Network Chair at Travis Perkins shares career story

Category: Pride Month, LGBTQ+, Pride Network, LGBTQ+ Ally, Celebrating Pride, LGBTQ+ Community, Travis Perkins, Empowering employees, Travis Perkins plc, Pride 2022

LGBTQ+

Ben is the Service Desk Manager in our IT Service Desk department in Head Office. He’s been in his role for 5 months now, but part of the Travis Perkins Group for over 5 years.

We spoke to him about his career progression with Travis Perkins, and how he feels working at a company on a journey to becoming truly diverse and inclusive. Read his story and find out more about what it’s like to work for our Group:

 

 

‘Collaboration is a key part of our ethos’

When asked why he decided to apply for his current role, Ben said having joined as a Service Desk Analyst, he knew he wanted to remain within the Group Technology Service (GTS), which is a vital part of our business, operating all things relating to information technology. ‘No day is the same and working with a team where collaboration is a key part of our ethos, we tackle any challenge presented to us. Through experience and completing the Level 3 Apprenticeship in Management, I've progressed within the team to my current position of Service Desk Manager.’

Apprenticeship programmes are a great way to continue learning and step up the career ladder. They’re not just for school leavers; absolutely anyone can be an Apprentice, and you’ll learn invaluable skills whilst earning. After achieving a Distinction in his Level 3, Ben is now currently on the Level 5 Operations Manager Apprenticeship, which involves building on his existing knowledge experience to learn how to be the best manager he can be.

 

‘I enjoy the variety of my role and speaking to people across the entire business’

When we asked Ben about what his role involves day to day, and what he most enjoys about it, we were pleased to hear that teamwork and cooperation played such a big part.

‘My role is to manage key stakeholders within the Group to ensure that our team delivers exceptional customer service while supporting colleagues with any IT Issues. I aspire for GTS to improve the service we provide by utilising new technologies and automating processes. I most enjoy the variety of my role, it allows me to speak to people across the entire business, while working closely with other teams to deliver on the group strategy.’

 

‘Before joining Travis Perkins, I worked within banking in customer service roles’

We’re proud to offer opportunities for career changers, and Ben took this on board. Before joining us, he worked in customer services in the banking sector, so wasn’t at all familiar with a builder’s merchant or the construction industry. However, he used the skills obtained in telephony-based work in customer services and sales and transferred them into his role with us.

We asked how he felt about joining the industry, and he admitted that at first, he did have some reservations. ‘There is a stereotype of someone who works within a builders merchant/construction industry. I can handle a paint brush and a hammer, but when it comes to bricks and mortar it’s not a speciality for me, so I was concerned I wouldn’t fit in with the masculine profile associated with the industry.’

We’re not like others in the industry though, and we’re proud to set ourselves apart and foster inclusive, diverse teams throughout our entire Group.

 

‘The people and the opportunity to develop are a big part of choosing to stay with the Group’

Ben told us about his career development to date, and it’s nothing short of impressive. Since October 2016, he worked his way up from Service Desk Analyst to Team Leader, and since October 2021 is now the Service Desk Delivery Manager.

‘I have met so many talented individuals across all areas of the business; individuals who have pushed me to grow and take on new challenges. Travis Perkins has invested in my development with the apprenticeship programmes and the skills I have gained from this has allowed me to cultivate talent within my own team.’

This is great to hear, and exactly the sense of achievement we want our people to feel.

 

‘I am the Proud Network Chair’

Ben launched our Proud Network in February 2020, and he’s now the Network Chair. Our Proud Network empowers our LGBTQ+ community and allies, ensuring all colleagues are understood, respected, and valued for who they are, with a true feeling that they can be their authentic selves at work without fear or prejudice.

Ben says that diversity, inclusion, and belonging are among his own core values because he wants everyone who works in the company to feel supported and empowered. ‘By having this network, it allows our colleagues to learn about the LGBTQ+ community and invoke and spark conversations more widely. We spend a large portion of our day and life at work, so it is essential that to feel comfortable and be 100% yourself without the fear of judgement or persecution.’

 

 

 

 

‘I know I’m where I should be’

When asked what advice he would give to someone thinking of joining the Group, Ben’s answer was inspiring. ‘If you're looking for a challenge and want to work for a company that invests in their colleagues and development then you've come to the right place. I've never really felt like I've belonged at other companies, however, I know I'm where I should be. I can be me.’

We’re driving to become a truly inclusive employer and we want you to be you because it makes us, us. If you’re looking for your next challenge, find out more about what [email protected] is like, or browse our available Head Office and Central Services jobs today.

 

Find out more about working at Travis Perkins

Explore current career opportunities at Travis Perkins

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VERCIDA works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with VERCIDA to promote your diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please email [email protected] for more information.

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