Danny joined our group graduate programme in September 2021, where he started in operations at our Tottle Bakery site in Nottingham, he spent time in production observing the lines, products, people, and processes. He attended meetings and worked with the planning and engineering departments to get a basic understanding of what we do and how it all works.
After 4 weeks, he was given responsibility to run a couple of our production lines and manage some of the team, which lead quickly into our Christmas peak.
Going into the new year, Danny was given a 5-week project based at our Poole Bakery site, where an area in one department was underperforming. Danny was asked to identify the issues and come up with ideas and processes to improve efficiencies and productivity. He was in charge of a packing area with around 40-50 people. Danny implemented some of the processes he had seen work effectively at Tottle Bakery and by working with the engineering team implemented changes to move the projects forward.
After this, he was given a second project at the Wrights site in Crewe to work alongside an external partner on a costings project. He was involved in validating product costing data, this gave him experience of a different sites processes.
These projects within his first 6 months with us gave him the experiences, knowledge, and foundations to move back to Tottle Bakery and take over as a shift manager.
Here is what he had to say about our scheme:
Why did you apply for the scheme in the first place, and what made it stand out and appeal most to you?
I think the main appeal was being able to work in different areas and departments, such as operations, supply chain, planning, and engineering. It was the exposure and variation, as I wasn’t 100% sure what I wanted to do at that point, so the opportunity to try all of the departments really appealed to me. That, and the fast track into management – I am working as a shift manager now, after only 9 months into this role. I don’t think there are many companies that could give this kind of opportunity so early on in someone’s career.
It feels like we are a small enough company for you to get involved in loads of different areas, but we are big enough to give you those experiences and opportunities across our sites.
What would you recommend or advise our new graduates starting in September?
This sounds like a cliché, but get involved immediately. Throw yourself into it, any little project you can get involved in, push to be on it. You are not going to be expected to know everything, you’re working with loads of different people and you will learn so much and develop quicker. Don’t wait to be told or asked, get stuck in – and ask for the projects to integrate yourself into the company.