Amanda's Women in Construction story
Amanda Thompson joined the team at Nottingham City Homes December 2021. Here's her story.
“In 2008, a happy and ambitious girl finds herself in Nottingham, living with her auntie and her elder sister, commuting daily to study at the University of Derby. (I’ve lived in Nottingham on and off for 14 years now, but I’ve still not got the accent!).
“I went on to have my first child in the middle of the pandemic, which presented quite the challenge – and as I neared the end of my maternity leave, I almost didn’t have a job to return to, as my role in a financial institution in London involved a transfer which didn’t, in the end, happen.
"I rushed into applying for other jobs – any jobs! - and accepted the offer of a role in a call centre. It soon turned out to be unsuitable though, because it didn’t work well with my childcare responsibilities.
“What I really wanted to do was to challenge myself to be the best version of myself, for my new family as much as anything. I had lots of experience in retail, hospitality and finance, and I’d enjoyed working in them all – but I felt in my gut that it was time to explore something new.
"I had career change conversations with several people, and heard about NCH’s Women in Construction programme from my uncle, who works at NCH. I did my research and was intrigued by the idea of women being supported to enter a male-dominated industry - so I booked onto a taster day!
“On the day, I enjoyed the talks from representatives of various construction companies, and listened to how we all have transferable skills. When I heard that experiences and interests such as being good at maths and enjoying dealing with people could be valuable in a construction career, I decided to take my chance, and filled in a work experience form.
"Five days later, I had a call offering me the opportunity to shadow a female Quantity Surveyor on one of NCH's new build sites. What better way to get a real feel for the job?
“I quit my job as a Customer Sales Rep three days later. Looking back, I was really taking a chance – walking away from a job, in a pandemic when jobs were so much harder to find. But I was ready to take on a new challenge – and hats off to my husband, who’s been there cheering me on throughout.
“I applied for and got a my current job, an Operational Resource Planner with NCH, in December, and I haven’t looked back. The team is great - very supportive and friendly – and I’m confident that this is the beginning of my path into the construction industry. Bring it on!”
Amanda’s manager, says, “Amanda has been a delight to work with from day one – she’s really positive, driven and keen to learn. If this is the calibre of candidates we get from Women in Construction taster days, please keep up the good work!”