Ben Brumby joined Capita straight out of university. Within just one year, he’d been promoted to a planning consultant. We caught up with him to discover what he’s been up to and how he’s found his first year with us.

I joined Capita after completing my MSc Planning course at the University of Manchester. The interview was very relaxed, and while I came in without any planning experience it was clear that Capita valued what I could offer them. They were willing to give me that step on the ladder for the start of my career.

First experiences

When I joined, they kept me well-informed at each stage. I even had my induction in a local café, which was a relaxed setting and a nice way to get to know my line manager, Richard.

In my first month, I was given extensive training around the workings of a Local Planning Authority, their expectations and the planning process in general. I was also given a few live planning applications to work on, supervised by my colleagues. This was great exposure, as while there was a lot to get my head around, it was reflective of the work I would be doing.

When I got my own contract, the team were really helpful. I could call or email my line manager any time I needed and we had daily calls, where they offered me advice that I still use today.

Growing in my role

Once I became more settled in the role, I gained much more freedom in terms of my workload. I could choose my scheme of work for the day and organise the days on which I conduct my site visits. I’ve been able to build strong relationships over time with both the Council staff, as well as agents and applicants, so I’ve never been short of people to contact for help or advice.

I can choose between home and office working and find the right balance for my life. Some days I might work at home in the morning and travel into the office in the afternoon. It’s a very modern office right in the centre of Manchester and provides a nice contrast to the relative peace of home working. There are social events too, which take place roughly twice a month.

Most importantly, I can see that there are opportunities for me to progress, both within the company and as a planner. I’ve been here for nearly a year now and I’ve just been promoted to a planning consultant. So, I now deal with a range of application types, some of which can be complex. It’s really broadened my planning skillset in a relatively short space of time and is proving invaluable in terms my personal development and my career ahead.

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