Published by Skills for Justice
‘There is immense power when a group of people with similar interests gets together to work toward the same goals.’ ― Idowu Koyenikan
As our Senior Consultant Dawn Probert would agree. Take a few minutes from your day to read Dawn’s answers to our questions and I am sure you will see why.
- What experiences led you to work for WD Trust?
I have had a long history working with, and for, the public sector starting in local government as a graduate chartered librarian, where I developed both management and people skills before managing local and national grants in an economic development department. Setting up and implementing a childcare information service then led me to work with the NHS and the then ‘Improving Working Lives’ Programme overseeing a team of childcare coordinators across NHS trusts in the West Midlands. I moved onto various NHS project management workforce roles with two different, then, Strategic Health Authorities undertaking projects such as recruitment and adaptation programmes for overseas doctors, nurses and dentists, and a GP retention scheme and implementing the revised pay and conditions of ‘Agenda for Change’ with an ambulance trust.
I was fortunate in being able to undertake a Certificate, Diploma and then MA in Management Studies whilst working with these employers.
I have always had a commitment to learning, education and training, especially with young people, and was attracted to the Workforce Development Trust 13 years ago as an Apprenticeship Manager overseeing the development of frameworks and the certification process for learners and training providers.
- What does an average day look like for you?
No two days are the same! There is a huge variety in the work, projects and commissions we undertake both geographically and sector-wise.
Days can involve desk work such as reading, researching and writing reports, telephone meetings and calls with clients and team members, facilitating meetings or workshops as well the administrative duties we require for our work.
- What do you enjoy most about your job?
One of the things I enjoy about my work is the variety -I have worked on a wide range of different projects and sectors in my time with the Workforce Development Trust across a wide geographic area within the UK.
I am also fortunate in working with colleagues within the WDT who are talented, experienced and committed to their work and supportive in assisting me with my work too.
Having originally only worked with the health sector I have recently enjoyed working with the justice and finance sectors. This insight has made me realise that all employers face similar workforce issues including the recruitment and retention of good staff and being as efficient as they can be with reduced budgets and higher public and government expectations.
- What upcoming projects are you working on?
Recent health sector projects range from developing a competence-based role profile for a Maternity Investigator for the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB), workforce planning with 2 GP practices in Leeds, and developing apprenticeship frameworks for Health Care Science Assistant Practitioners in Wales. Ongoing work is developing a new Welsh apprenticeship framework for Therapy Assistant Practitioners.
In the justice sector this has included working with the College of Policing on their new Policing Professional Profiles and developing new apprenticeship frameworks in Wales for the roles of Police Constable and Police Community Support Officer (PCSO). Following on from this I have been assisting SFJ Awards in developing the PCSO End Point Assessment Guides for employers and apprentices.
- In a perfect world…
In a perfect world all people would have access to a meaningful job or role and equality of opportunity and access to education and training. I am encouraged that the new Welsh Police Constable apprenticeship programme already has over 100 new police recruits who commenced training in March. I hope that the work I have contributed to over the years, especially on various workforce and apprenticeship programmes will have enabled and continue to enable a significant number of people of all ages to develop via this route.
If you have any questions you’d like to put to our team, email us at email@example.com. To make sure if don’t miss our forthcoming pieces about our team, sign up to our newsletter at the bottom of the page.