Daniel Sergeant – Lancashire County Council

Daniel-Sergeant

Name, Age and Job Role
Daniel Sergeant, Technical Support officer.

Which type of Apprenticeship are you doing or have you completed?
I have completed an Advanced Level 3 Business Administration at Lancashire County Council and I have now progressed on to a Level 4 Higher Associate Project Management Apprenticeship.

Who do you work for and what do they do?
I work in Waste Management. We are a Waste Disposal Authority for Lancashire, which means that one of our main responsibilities is to deal with all the waste collected by Lancashire waste collection authorities (district councils). We also have a statutory obligation to provide recycling centres for the household waste that arises around the county.

Why did you choose to become an apprentice?
I knew that I wanted to earn whilst I was learning. Although I didn’t opt to go to university, I was adamant that I wanted to continue to learn and to provide myself with as much training as possible to assist me throughout my career.

What does your day in your work life involve?
My service, the waste management group, recently insourced the household waste recycling centre service, which is a huge operational service consisting of 15 recycling centres and over 130 members of staff. When insourcing the service, I started my new role as a Technical Support Officer working predominately on the operations of the household waste recycling centres. My role is extremely varied which I am grateful for. We work with contractors to ensure our recycling centre contract is adhered to, both financially and operationally, which means I’m regularly dealing with data and finance. Furthermore, I’m often on site completing operational audits of the recycling centre operations and writing reports to feed this information back to a number of senior officers and managers.

It has been extremely beneficial learning the academic aspects of an apprenticeship via college and tutoring, whilst having the support from my managers and a team of people around me that understand that I am learning, continually trying make improvements to the service and I have been working on projects to assist with these changes. In doing so, I have been able to incorporate my apprenticeship learning in to my current role. Also as part of my training, I’ve started working with officers who work on various other tasks within the department, for example working with and shadowing officers who procure our contracts, and working closely with health and safety officers to develop risk assessments and safe working procedures.

What do you enjoy and what is the best thing about being an apprentice?
It has been extremely beneficial learning the academic aspects of an apprenticeship via college and tutoring, Whilst having the support from my managers and a team of people around me that understand that I am learning, continually helping me to progress in the workplace. As an apprentice, my colleagues have invested time in training and assisting me in a variety of different tasks that I wouldn’t have necessarily had the chance to partake in if I wasn’t here to learn.

What are your career plans and what would you like to be doing in 5 years’ time?
With waste arising on the increase, the industry is constantly developing and I’m certain it will continue to grow with our priorities focusing on ways to maximise re-use and recycling rates. Hopefully I’ll be able to apply my skills and knowledge to do so, whilst improving the service we provide to the residents of Lancashire. I enjoy my current role very much, but 5 years is a long time and by the end I certainly hope to have progressed and to have hopefully been promoted. I guess that’s up to me and I just have to put the work in to ensure that happens!

What is your greatest achievement?
After completing my first apprenticeship, I featured both on the training providers website and LCCs internal ‘Intranet’ and was recognised for the hard work I put in to my work and qualification by my tutor and manager, my tutor referred to my work as ‘some of the best I have seen’ which I was fairly happy about considering she had been working with apprentices for many years and retired just after I finished.

Give us one fun fact about yourself!
I once featured on a BBC programme called the ‘Exchange’. I represented Preston North End before the 2005 play offs. I spent a day around the stadium filming, which was summarised in a short clip during the programme I then went to London for the studio episode which was around 45 minutes long. It was fun, but I can remember having cold beans and tomatoes poured on my head… which still haunts me to this day! My mum shares embarrassing clips of me on Facebook every year that everyone else seems to find hilarious.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone thinking about becoming an apprentice?
I would suggest that anyone given the opportunity of an apprenticeship takes that opportunity and makes the most of it. The effort you put in really does count.

What school did you attend?
Broughton High School