I’m an agency worker in the Looked After Children team at South Gloucestershire Council.
What were your first impressions on joining South Gloucestershire Council?
I did have some apprehension before I started about whether as a contractor I would truly feel part of the team. Adding to the uncertainty, my first week in the job coincided with the start of an Ofsted inspection!
I needn’t have worried. Whilst there was the usual flurry of activity that comes with an inspection, everyone still had time to make me feel welcome. I felt settled straight away.
What was it that made you feel so settled?
I just felt really supported from day one. There’s a great team spirit and a culture where our skills, experience and expertise are recognised.
Our team is a very diverse group, but I think we’re very good at tapping into each other’s skills and knowledge to deliver the best for the young people and families we work with. Even though I’m agency, I’m encouraged to go on training courses, I have discussions with my manager about my development and my career – I feel like people are interested in what I have to offer over the long term.
What does South Gloucestershire Council offer agency workers?
We’re not seen any differently from anyone else.
South Gloucestershire offers very approachable managers and supportive colleagues. We have difficult decisions to make, but I never feel like I’m alone; I know I can always go to my manager and ask for advice and that his door will always be open.
Also, it may seem like a very minor thing, but I like our offices. They’re modern, bright and airy, but more importantly, the teams we work with are primarily on one site. If I need help or information from another team, I can go and speak to them in person, meaning I can deliver a better, more timely response.
You can meet more of our children’s social work team on our social work website.