I joined DVLA in 2010 working for the Customer Contact Centre and moved to an HR role with the DfT Advice Service in 2012.  Seeking a new challenge I joined Commercial Directorate (CD) in November 2016 as a Lead Commercial Advisor. Procurement was a new environment for me and I was quickly made to feel welcome and supported by my fellow colleagues.

During my time in CD I have had the opportunity to work in three different categories and whilst each has presented its own challenges all have been rewarding experiences. My first role was with the IT procurement team, dealing with a high profile technology refresh. This opportunity was a great way to start as I was quickly introduced into the fast-paced world of IT procurement. With the help of my team I was able to learn on the job and could shadow colleagues until I was comfortable with the procedures.

Following this I spent 12 months with the Print, Office and Mail category, where I worked on a variety of different procurements for all areas of DVLA. Working with the different business areas allowed me to understand their diverse needs and taught me how to help shape a fit for purpose requirement.

I am currently a Category Lead in the Outsourcing Contracts team dealing with some of DVLA’s largest supply contracts. I have had the opportunity to be part of several interesting projects, the most high profile of which involved working in cross-party groups in the Agency and also DfT.  No one day is the same in CD, but typically it could include working with a business area on how to write a requirement for a service, reviewing procurement plans to ensure they adhere to internal governance and meeting with suppliers to negotiate variations to existing contracts. My role is varied and interesting and I have an excellent team around me, supporting each other with any challenges that the job presents.

CD encourages and promotes continuous professional development, supporting its staff to progress their careers.  I gained promotion to a senior role a year ago with the support and guidance of my manager, who ensured I had opportunities that would prepare for my current role. As a part time member of staff I have always been keen to create a work life balance while actively developing and progressing my career, and CD has fully supported this. I was encouraged to complete my Level 4 CIPS training and will shortly commence Level 5. As part of my learning, study time is allocated. It’s refreshing to know that CD is committed to developing its staff to become the best they can be.