For National Apprenticeship Week 2023, we catch up with Head of Facilities Scott Parkin.

Scott started his career in the construction industry, completing his City & Guilds apprenticeship in carpentry and joinery at the Sheffield College.

Specialising in shopfitting, Scott worked with large organisations, such as Lloyds Banking Group, Network Rail, Starbucks and Green King Brewery.

Further into his career, Scott progressed into site & project management, managing timescales, budgets and day-to-day workflow.

Scott also spent a couple of years in the engineering/health and safety sector. Working in spectroscopy, Scott performed analysis on anaesthetic gas levels within NHS operating theatres and produced reports on workplace exposure levels and COSHH guidance.

Eventually, Scott returned to carpentry and joinery, running his own business that focused on bespoke one-off pieces of furniture and an e-commerce website that exclusively sold handmade products.

Scott is part of the Senior Management team at STEPS in addition to his role as Head of Facilities. Scott became a member of the Institute of Workplace & Facilities Management (IWFM) and is working towards his level 3 Diploma in Facilities Management.

Outside of work, Scott enjoys spending time with his young family. Whether that’s weekend walks in the Peak District, pool side at swimming lessons or pitch side at football training – anything to tire the kids out!

Q What course are you currently studying, where is the course and how long will it take?

I am pursuing my Level 3 Diploma in Facilities Management through Sheffield College, with a cohort that began in March 2022. The programme spans two years. The course is in partnership with the Institute of Workplace and Facilities Management (IWFM).

Q How did you find working and studying at the same time, were there any particular challenges?  What did STEPS do to enable you to achieve this?

Balancing work, parenting, and studying for my diploma has been challenging but I'm grateful for the support from STEPS. They allocate dedicated hours every Tuesday, which allows me to solely focus on my studies and attend college. Without this structured time, it would have been difficult to complete the programme.

Q What is next for you, do you plan to undertake any further education?  Has your job role changed in any way?

Upon completing my Level 3 Diploma, I aim to apply my newfound knowledge by working as the Head of Facilities for several years. Afterwards, I plan to pursue the Level 4 IWFM Diploma to continue my professional development.

Q #SkillsForLife – what skills and knowledge will you get from the course and how will this help your career?

IWFM is the acknowledged organization for facilities professionals. Its units cover a variety of topics, from CSR and budget management to inclusive design of facility services. These units have equipped me with a comprehensive understanding of how to improve my performance as a Facilities Manager. By considering the three levels of management structure (strategic, tactical, and operational), I have a more comprehensive view of the organisation, which leads to better decision making and increased efficiency.