Meet Laura Heath- Commercial Scheme Sponsor at Network Rail. Read about her flexible working experience with the organisation.
I joined Network Rail 13 years on the graduate management scheme. This gave me lots of opportunities and I undertook placements in both maintenance and operations. During my time on the graduate scheme I was responsible for developing the commercial relationship between Network Rail and Southeastern (the train operating company in Kent).
Once completing the graduate scheme I was then promoted to the Route Performance Manager for all of Kent, which meant at 25 years old, I was managing a team of 20, focusing on performance analysis and improvement for the whole of the Kent route. This was a fantastic experience and exposure for me early on my career. I then became a station manager at Charing Cross and Cannon Street during the Olympics and played a pivotal role in making the London games the success they were.
I then moved into project management roles and I am now in my current role as Commercial Scheme Sponsor where I am responsible for key client stakeholder management with third party funders and Local Authorities in Kent and Sussex to achieve investment in railway infrastructure and station enhancement projects.
When I was promoted to the role of Station Manager London Charing Cross and Cannon Street. This was a hugely high profile, fascinating and challenging role. It was an incredibly exciting role where I was at the centre of both the planning and executing the London 2012 Olympic games.
Coupled with this, through Network Rail I was sponsored to do a Business Leaders course at Warwick University the credits of which count towards an MBA.
The South-East route have been so accommodating and helped me manage my work and home life with ease. Having 2 children within 2 years is not easy for anyone, but through work I was able to secure a job closer to home and work part time.
With my manager we agreed that I work 3 days a week, which include Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. I am planning to increase to 4 days a week in the new year now that my children are a bit older, with 3 days in the office and one day from home.
I am passionate about the company and the work we do, which impacts on customers across the UK. Working for the South-East route I have had endless opportunities to grow my career and seek new challenges when I want to.
The flexibility, has enhanced my working life, my manager totally understands the need to manage both work and personal life and has been very flexible. I can work from home when I need to and we have a number of people in the team doing condensed hours. This flexibility has not only helped me succeed in my career but has also meant I can still apply for different opportunities and promotions.
This case study was written and supplied by Network Rail