University: University of East Anglia, Politics and Economics (BSc Hons)
For my second placement on the Management Programme, I am placed in Highways Asset Management which sits within the Highways Transportation and Waste division. The role of the service is to ensure highways in Kent remain safe, functioning, and allow traffic to move around efficiently. The management of highways takes into account roads, streetlights, footways, drainage and other structures.
I am based with the East Kent Highways team in Ashford, but am also working very closely with Mid and West Kent Highways. Currently, I’m putting together a comprehensive iPad-friendly incident response guide for use by our out of hours duty officers. This provides a crucial backup tool clarifying their remit, and actions they need to take in a variety of situations out of normal hours, ranging from small dead animals on the highway to the most serious road traffic collisions.
Going forward, I’ll be linking this in with the multi agency gold-silver-bronze command structure, meaning the strategic, tactical and operational aspects of the highways out of hours process will become more formally aligned, increasing the efficiency of incident escalation.
Later in the placement, I will have the opportunity to shadow many of the teams working within the Highways Transportation and Waste division, giving me as broad as possible understanding of the challenges faced by colleagues operationally, as well as how all the functions link in with each other.
Why I applied for the Kent Graduate Programme management stream
I’d been attracted to the idea of working in the public sector since I was about 15, when it struck me that I could be contributing directly towards society’s general welfare as well as improving value for money for the taxpayer. The Kent Graduate Management Programme was (and still is) one of the most established and most sought after local authority graduate schemes. This is largely aided by the variety of placements (4 x 6 month) we are exposed to on the programme, as well as the immediate responsibility and accountability expected of the graduates upon arrival.
The recruitment process also made clear the that the programme offers an APM Project Management qualification in Year 1 and a CMI Level 7 qualification in Year 2 of the programme, which gave me even more belief that I can really gain the skills over the period to set me on my way to becoming an effective and successful manager in the organisation further down the line.