Career stories

How our employees progress


Anthony_Walker_Career_Stories

Antony Walker
Assistant Retirement Housing Manager

I joined Housing & Care 21 on a six-month contract to update policies and run customer engagement activities. This opportunity was extended and then a year later I moved to the research team.

My career development was supported through help with gaining a market research qualification and I gained valuable experience by working on new assistive technologies, such as software to detect falls when older people are at home.

Something which I never I expected when I joined was to end up presenting at an EU conference in Eindhoven in Germany, which was a great experience for me.

My next role was as Customer Experience Manager, setting up surveys and mystery shopping activities to gain customer feedback on how we can improve our services. I developed my skills by undertaking our management development programme, called Leading 2 Excellence.

This helped to prepare me for my current role as Assistant Retirement Housing Manager. I made the step from our corporate services team to operations. As a manager in retirement housing operations, I am responsible for 10 courts with over 350 properties. I am learning a lot in my current role and pleased that I continue to develop. Each day is different.

One day I might be debating plans for a major court refurbishment whilst the next day I’m supporting a member of my team to resolve a tricky situation on their court. It’s fast paced and a real challenge but I’m really enjoying it.


Gemma Herbert
Housing & Care Court Manager, Mulberry Court

I started with Housing & Care 21 in July 2012 after 8 months of unemployment. I had previously worked in a care home but without any chance of career progression. Working at Housing & Care 21 has been very different.

I began as a care assistant and was nervous because I didn’t know much about extra care. I was worried that having been 'just a mum' for so long I couldn't sell myself for this role but luckily I was wrong about that. I was put at ease during my interview and was told that anything was possible in a growing company. And with a growing company that meant growing the staff too.

I was soon a senior care worker but worried about how I could make the switch to supporting my care worker colleagues who I previously worked alongside. I decided to study for NVQ3 in health and social care to help my development. Before I knew it I was then successful in becoming a care team leader, the next rung in the care career ladder. In 15 months I had surpassed any previous achievements with other employers.

After a good stint as a care team leader, I then became a care manager in January 2016. Again something that I couldn't have achieved anywhere I had worked previously. I'm not going to say this was easy and a walk in the park. It's not. We are delivering services to people who require in-depth knowledge on health conditions. We are confidantes, a listening ear, a person to cry with, a person to shout at and this happens every minute of every day. Up until this role I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life but my career was now progressing well. 

Gemma_Herbert_career_stories

Another opportunity came up, another interview to attend, and I am now a housing and care manager, moving back to the court where I started. I hate interviews but I am doing what I want to do: to make a difference to the lives of others. Working in care is rewarding.

My latest development as I reach 5 years’ service is a level 5 manager qualification and I have become a CQC registered manager. Housing & Care 21 is committed to developing its people and I have seen this first hand.

I can only speak to those, like me, who want to make a difference - give it a go, see what it's like... you never know, in 5 years’ time you might have exceeded your own expectations – just like I have.


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