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David - Assistant Branch Manager, ABM Former Light Infantry

09 Jan
David joined the army in 1983 aged 16. He enjoyed a varied career with the Light Infantry, serving in the Falklands, Belize, Canada, Germany and Northern Ireland, as well as closer to home in Bulford and Blackpool. After leaving the forces in 1994, his first job was in the building trade.

“I first got interested in construction when I took courses in carpentry, painting and glazing whilst still in the Light Infantry. So when I left, I chose a resettlement course in dry-lining to expand my skills before taking a building job in the north of England.

Later on, I moved down south and trained as a driving instructor, but due to heavy competition I decided to look for a new job. I then found a position as Project Manager with an interior fitout company, looking after numerous projects including Williams Formula One.

It was during this time that I first came into contact with CCF, which was one of my firm’s suppliers. A colleague later took a sales job at CCF Southampton and I followed suit in 2002. I really enjoyed the work and later relocated back up north to work at the Travis Perkins National Sales Office in Carlisle.

However, when I heard that CCF were planning to expand into Cumbria, I kept a close eye on developments. Sure enough, CCF opened a branch in Carlisle and I was delighted to be offered the role of Assistant Branch Manager (ABM).

Being an ABM is a highly varied job. I support the Branch Manager with general operations and running the branch, and I’m involved in sales so I spend a lot of time talking to customers and building relationships. I’m also involved with Health and Safety around the branch.

Whilst in the army, I received lots of training that I’ve successfully transferred to the ABM role, with skills such as management, leadership and selfdiscipline proving invaluable. Since joining CCF, I’ve also had further management training as well as gaining job-specific skills such as transport coordination and First Aid.

I’m currently changing roles to become the branch Transport & Operations Manager at CCF Carlisle, which I’m very excited about. I’ll be responsible for all the vehicles and drivers working out of the branch: booking transport, downloading the digital tachograph driver cards and arranging for the trucks to be serviced, MOT’d and repaired.

On the operational side, I’ll also be involved in things like stock-takes and pre-audit checks in the warehouse. I love being in the branch, but it will be great to get out and about in my new role as I’ll also be a relief driver, providing cover for holidays and other time off.

Working at CCF has given me some fantastic opportunities to broaden my knowledge and develop my career. I’ve had the chance to be involved in changes to how the branch is run, such as providing input into how our new yard should be built.

To anyone leaving the forces and looking for a new career, I’d definitely recommend CCF and the Travis Perkins Group. My advice would be: play to your strengths. Think about what you learned in the forces and how you can apply these skills to the different roles that are available. The Group has a lot to offer ex-service personnel from a wide variety of backgrounds – and it’s a great business to work for.”
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