Facilities Manager
Lewisham Council

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Fresia C

00:00:04 My name is Fresia C, and my job title is Facilities Manager. I look after the corporate cleaning contract, and also the corporate security contract. And added on to that, I also look after the common parts within a building, to ensure that it’s safe for staff to use, and it covers all the Health and Safety Regulations. Just part of one element of my job, and that is to ensure that the buildings that I look after are compliant for fire evacuation, and making sure that staff are trained in the use of fire evacuation equipment. And making sure that fire evacuation equipment up to standard, and are tested regularly, and so on.

00:00:48 I stayed at school until I was 16, and then had to start thinking about career options. I was never actually told about A-Levels, or to move on to A-Levels, so I decided that I wanted to go out to work. So I went to the Careers Office, and we had some advice about, you know, what’s the best route I could take. And as an Admin Assistant was one of the routes that they suggested. And I got 6 jobs, so I just looked at the 6, and decided, well which one pays the most? And that’s the job I went for, and that was at the Cabinet Office at Whitehall, and I was there for two years.

00:01:27 I decided I wanted to work in the bank, or the financial field. So I actually left the Cabinet Office, and got a temporary job in an Australian bank. And the dealers – we used to sit amongst the dealers – and as some of the dealers would call out there trading, we used to enter them in. we experienced some ups and downs, and we experienced the Black Monday, where everything came crashing down. I’ve had experience where one dealer traded on the wrong stock, and lost the company £20 million. So, you know, the emotions, and the adrenaline that – that’s pumped, you know, when something like that happens, you know, can really bring you down. But then again, you got to pick yourself up, and keep going. So I’ve experienced the highs and the lows within the dealers’ floor.

00:02:13 My experience of work has been pretty good, ninety-five percent have been fantastic. But I did have an experience where I went to a local company, and when I got there the HR Manager looked at me, and just indicated to the secretary, just find her something and get her out. And I felt that that was in relations to my colour. And they asked me to do this test, which was nothing to do with the job that I was going for, and as I was doing the test, you know, I became emotionally upset and, you know, the tears were just falling down my eyes. But at that point I just decided that no, nothing is going to beat me down, I’m going to stay up. I just want to encourage anyone that, you know, you may go through negative experience, but allow that to help you to grow. And allow that to focus you, and to move you forward.

00:03:07 Outside of my work I’m a foster carer, so I look after young people. And my passion is to go and work in the community. And I believe that, you know, you can do anything you wanna do. You may not necessarily have the qualifications to do it, but you can always find a way round it, and gain the qualifications. I’ve had to go back to learning, to just get me qualified for the job I’m doing at the moment. And I’ve been out of school now for nearly thirty years. So it’s not impossible. If it’s not impossible for me to go back after so long, it’s not impossible for anybody else.

00:03:43 I see myself running a community project, for young people. They just need a helping hand really, they just need someone to motivate them and encourage them and say, you know, come on, you can do this. I did it, I’m an example, you can. And just give them that helping hand really, just to get to that next step. That’s what I’d like to do.

00:04:03 ENDS


Fresia C is a Facilities Manager for Lewisham Council. She looks after buildings and the security and cleaning contracts. She is also responsible for the Health and Safety Regulations. She has had a varied career and started in the Cabinet Office at 16 and also worked in adrenelin fueled finance. Her passion is to work with the community. She keeps on learning even though she left school 30 years ago. Oustside work she is a foster carer and would like to work with a young people’s community project.

More information about Local government administrative occupations

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

24%  male 
76%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Job holders in this unit group undertake a variety of administrative and clerical duties in local government offices and departments.
Entry is most common with GCSEs/S grades. Evidence of keyboard skills may also be required in some posts. Off- and on-the-job training is provided. NVQs/SVQs in Administration are available at Levels 2 and 3.
  • Computes cost of product/services and maintains and balances records of financial transactions;
  • Prepares and checks invoices and verifies accuracy of records;
  • Receives and pays out cash and cheques and performs closely related clerical duties;
  • Updates and maintains data, correspondence and other records for storage or despatch;
  • Arranges, classifies and indexes publications, correspondence and other material in libraries and offices;
  • Performs other clerical duties not elsewhere classified including preparing financial information for management, proof reading printed material and drafting letters in reply to correspondence or telephone enquiries.
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