Superwomen - Women in Construction: Laura Moore
“Work hard, play hard” seems to embody Laura Moore’s attitude, who in addition to being the East Midlands branch manager of Mobile Mini is also a member of Great Britain’s Women’s American Football team.
Laura’s workday can be both challenging and immensely rewarding, as her average day includes a wide range of tasks from management to hands-on jobs. As a manager at portable container & site accommodation hire company Mobile Mini, she oversees the supply of a wide range of storage and welfare unit solutions across the East Midlands area.
Read on for a busy day-in-the-life of Laura.
Laura explains that her first priority of the day is always her team. “I tend to be the first one in, and this way I can catch everyone when they arrive and say hello as they pass my office, which is a great way to check in with everyone.”
As everyone arrives at the office, Laura starts checking the schedule for the day and ensuring everything is in place to meet the day’s work output. Mobile Mini handles hundreds of enquiries and orders daily, and it is Laura’s job to ensure that these are met in a timely fashion and to the standards expected of the company. Laura needs to “monitor how we are sitting in terms of asset management and pending order reports, making sure we are on course” at the start of each day.
Laura’s work with Mobile Mini involves a variety in her tasks and schedule which keeps her on her toes; she reveals that this has become ”one of the reasons I love my job so much.”
“On a general day I’ll check in to see if we’re hitting the timeframes around collections and processing. Are we rotating our stock and not having units sitting around for a period of time? Are we capturing all repairs? I like to make sure we catch any problems with units early, that way we can guarantee every one of our customers receives the best possible product.”
Quality control and customer service take priority in Laura’s schedule. Once she is assured this, she starts dealing with the more business-orientated side of things; “I’ll keep an eye on profit and loss – where are we in the month against margin and target, what can we do to improve?” It’s important to Laura that she is constantly evaluating every aspect of performance at her branch and seeking to better the business and its services wherever possible.
“After lunch I like to check in with the team again – people are our most important asset and I like to make sure staff are happy and motivated.” It’s also essential for Laura to have this kind of regular engagement with her team to make sure everyone remains informed and is on the same page when it comes to work; “We’re all one team, from yard to office, and all chip in together – so this regular engagement means everyone knows I’m here if they need me.”
“One of my favourite tasks is reviewing the driver’s performance charts with them as they are so competitive and always looking to be number one – I can certainly identify with that!”
As Laura mentioned previously, the wide range of tasks in her work is one of the things which keeps her enthusiastic and motivated in her work. “In the afternoon, I like to help out with whatever needs doing, whether it’s helping in the office, training, support, stock taking or supply ordering. I’m happy to get stuck in with whatever’s needed – the variety keeps me on my toes and ensures every day brings a different challenge.”
Laura likens working in operations to trying to “juggle, spin plates and bounce a ball off your foot”. Quick-thinking and problem-solving skills form a major part of her work: “Being busy and finding a solution is why many people are attracted to hire as a career; while trying to implement proactive measures in the business, you are always going to have to react to the next hire, the next delivery, the next problem.
“I would say with my experience we always find a way as a team, or at the very least give an alternative solution.”
Outside of work, Laura’s competitive edge and energy continue. “In my spare time, I play as Defensive End for Birmingham Lions, an American football team. Additionally, I coach the Defensive Line at the University of Nottingham and I like to practise as often as possible. It’s a great way to relax and keep fit, and the competitive element really helps me in my role at Mobile Mini too. I am a competitive person and being around people who want to achieve, want to improve and clearly want to help grow the business is such a bonus to my working day.”
Laura is usually in bed by 10: “I try to be in bed early to get a good night’s sleep, and I always sleep like a log, looking forward to the next day.”
In summarising her work, Laura says “For me, the best thing about working for Mobile Mini is being around the people I work with. We have a great team in the East Midlands and we all really push each other to achieve and hit targets. Aside from being a motivated bunch, we also have a lot of fun at work and someone is always making someone else laugh. We work hard and play hard and support each other – and that’s what makes it such a great place to work.”
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Vinci Facilities, Amey and Vivo win UK defence contracts
VINCI Facilities has been awarded an estimated £1.1 billion contract to provide facilities management services to Ministry of Defence (MoD) for its Built Estate across the South East of England. The total contract is for a seven-year term, with an option to extend for three additional years.
The deal includes £423m for the core contract and a potential £732m for billable works. It is one of four regional hard FM and capital works contracts and VINCI Facilities will be managing over 6,200 buildings and infrastructure assets supporting a significant number of MoD military and civilian personnel in over 59 establishments and is being mobilised now.
It is among a flurry of deals involving the MoD and Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) this month.
Amey has secured two contracts with the DIO to maintain Service Family Accommodation (SFA) across its Central and Northern regions.
The contracts, which fall under the Regional Accommodation Maintenance Services (RAMS) element of the Future Defence Infrastructure Services (FDIS) will run for seven years with an option to extend for an additional three. In addition to the core services, which include housing maintenance, the contracts will deliver improvement projects and refurbishment work to approximately 25,000 properties.
The contract award follows Amey successfully delivering maintenance solutions under National Housing Prime - procured under the Next Generation Estates contract in 2014. Amey’s defence team will work with the DIO to provide enhanced services, as outlined within the new FDIS requirement, through collaborative working and improved data management.
RAMS will support more than 500 jobs within Amey and its key supply chain partners in both the Central and Northern regions. New ways of working will provide opportunities for flexible employment, meaning members of the military community, parents, and carers will be able to access jobs. This will translate into more choice and flexibility for people living in SFA.
Craig McGilvray, Managing Director of Amey Secure Infrastructure, said: “We recognise the important role housing plays to military personnel and are committed to providing an enhanced service that not only improves living standards but contributes to thriving communities.
“Supporting and sustaining regional and local supply chain partners remains a core part of Amey’s agenda and we are pleased that our delivery model will support specialist contractors across Britain including Northern Ireland.”
Air Commodore James Savage, DIO Head of Accommodation, said: “Accommodation is such an important part of family life for Servicemen and women, which is why we collaborated closely with representatives of our Service personnel and their families to develop these contracts and ensure that their needs are fully considered.
“These new contracts offer the opportunity to break decisively from the past and to build on the commitments made by all suppliers to innovate and deliver more responsive and flexible services to the Armed Forces and their families.”
This month VIVO Defence Services (VIVO), a 50/50 Joint Venture between Serco, the international provider of services to governments, and ENGIE were awarded contracts to provide asset and facilities management services for the UK Defence built estate by the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO).
VIVO has been awarded contracts for two of the four regions being tendered under Lot 3 of the Future Defence Infrastructure Services (FDIS) programme. VIVO will be responsible for providing services in the South West and Central regions of the UK, the largest two regions of the four that were competed, and which represent around 2/3rds of the MOD’s estimated value of Lot 3 of the Future Defence Infrastructure Services contracts.
The total core contract value to VIVO for the two regions is estimated to be around £900m over the initial seven-year period. There are a further three one-year extension options. In addition to the core fixed price contract for each region, there will be significant amounts of additional project work, which will be commissioned as required by the DIO. The Ministry of Defence estimates that they are likely to be worth a further £2.5bn over the initial seven-year term.