|In the next in our series of meet the team articles we talk to Janice Snape, EPA Relationship Co-ordinator at SIAS. Janice joined the team in 2015 when SIAS was just an idea on a piece of paper, as Administration Manager until a couple of months ago when she transitioned into her new role.|
Thanks for joining us Janice, can you start by letting our readers know who you are and what your role is at SIAS?
“I’m Janice and I am now one of our EPA coordinators here at SIAS, but until just a couple of months ago I was the administration manager. I’ve been at SIAS right from the beginning, I’ve always been in a role that’s mainly paper-based working on developing documents and managing data, but I’m now much more interactive with our customers and involved in organising end-point assessments. So, it’s a bit different to what I used to do.”
How long have you been at SIAS and what was your own background before you joined the organisation?
“I’ve been at SIAS for a little over 8 years now, so when I joined, SIAS was just an idea on a piece of paper and not much else. In essence I’ve been here from the very beginning.
“I’ve been in education for a long time; I worked a classroom assistant in a school, and at one point I was actually a dinner lady, but that was a long time ago! I then moved into FE and worked in a community FE organising courses for disadvantaged people and delivering outreach courses to people who wouldn’t come into college. I then moved into mainstream FE working on the old Train to Gain project, organising courses in the workplace.
“My next move was into a private training provider, organising their administration and contracts to make sure they were compliant data wise. I did everything there, mainly because it was just me for a long time.
“Then I arrived at SIAS! So, generally speaking, I’ve been in education in some form from the very beginning.”
If you were to give people an insight into your world is there a way to describe a typical day for you?
“The first thing that comes to my mind is, it’s busy! We’re very responsive to our customers so there’s a continual need to manage and support customer questions and enquiries. We’re also very proactive, so most days I’m keeping in touch with customers and making sure their apprentices are on programme and up to date.
“As an organisation we strive to have a lot of interaction with customers so we do a lot of planning meetings with the apprentices and their mentors. Speaking to the apprentices is something I’ve never had to do in this job before so that’s really interesting!”
There’s a lot happening at SIAS. What’s the thing that excites you the most?
“I think for me, what excites me the most is the team growing and seeing the way we’re all working together. There’s a real buzz about the place. Even when we’re all busy and we can be tearing our hair out trying to get things planned and coordinating assessors, it’s not easy but the atmosphere is great. We’re working with some big businesses that have got strict deadlines and they’ve got their own rules to abide by, so getting everything coordinated can be absolutely crazy sometimes, but with the buzz and everybody helping each other, always looking for ways to get things done better and quicker, it’s a real exciting time.”
Moving on to Janice outside work, tell us a little about you?
“I’ve been married now for 35 years this year and I have four fully grown-up children, two grandchildren and some step grandchildren. We have a lot of people always in and out of our house, the grandchildren stay with us every Thursday night, so Thursday night we have a bit of a madhouse. So as soon as the children go to school on the Friday morning we zip off to our caravan in Wales for a bit of peace and quiet. We love to spend our time in the country, we’ve also got a border collie, Jack, who’s getting on a bit now unfortunately. He doesn’t like the long walks, but we walk a lot out in the hills in mid Wales and wonder in the peace and quiet every weekend.”
And, any final thoughts to leave with our readers?
“I think it’s just such an exciting time, the growth in science and technology is tremendous. Having seen SIAS grow from nothing but an idea on a piece of paper with a couple of people working on it, to today; it’s a whole different world and it’s so exciting. We have such a lovely team and it’s great to work in. I look forward to what happens next!”