Sarah Barnes - Programme Manager

Sarah Barnes - Programme Manager

What is your name?

Sarah Barnes

What company do you currently work for?

Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) Moray

What is your job title?

Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) Moray Programme Manager

Provide a brief description of your business.

As an employer-led organisation, we work with businesses in Moray to help provide young people with more opportunities to develop their employability skills.

Describe your career pathway after leaving school.

When I left Buckie High School, I went on to become a Carer with Parklands Group for 9 months at Netherha Care Home. I really enjoyed it and developed so many skills in such a short time. I also gained an SVQ Level 2 in Caring and studied a Dementia Awareness course whilst I was a Carer.

Following this, I went to study an Honours Degree in Management with Human Resource Management at Robert Gordon University (RGU). Throughout my time at University I had a few part-time roles. I first worked in a Bakery, then a Cleaner. then a Retail Assistant and then a Waitress. At one time I worked two part-time jobs as well as studying.

In my third year at University I was offered a 1 year paid internship with Schlumberger Oilfield (MI-Swaco) within the Human Resources Department. Following my one year internship, I was offered to stay with Schlumberger part-time throughout my fourth year of University.

After finishing University with a First Class honours in 2016 I decided I wanted to move back to Moray. Upon moving home, I received a job offer at DYW Moray as a DYW Co-ordinator. When the opportunity arose a year later to step into the DYW Programme Manager I applied and was offered the position, still here nearly five years later.

Have you ever been an apprentice? If yes, please explain what this was, what this involved and why would you encourage others to undertake an apprenticeship.

I have not been an apprentice however, if the Graduate Apprenticeship scheme was available at the time I left school, I would have definitely pursued this route.

What school subjects would be helpful for your job role?

  • English
  • Maths
  • Business
  • Admin
  • Work Experience

What is your favourite thing about the work that you do?

I really enjoy learning about the different businesses in Moray and helping them engage and support young people. It is a very rewarding role. I also enjoy supporting my team.

Why did you want to work in this industry?

I didn't consider this industry as I wasn't aware of the opportunities within it at school. However, it's a perfect fit for me!

I specifically pursued Human Resources as a subject at University as it was of most interest to me. However, I really enjoy the work I do now and the skills I learned at school and University are completely transferable.

Did you ever want to pursue another career?

I am open to lots of different opportunities and would consider many careers in the future. I do enjoy most in my current role Project Management, Human Resources Management and Business Development.

What does a typical day in your role involve?

Managing and supporting a team of 8, Project Management, Meetings with Partners, Meetings with Businesses, Reporting and Strategic Planning.

What skills are required to do your job?

  • Team-work
  • Decision Making
  • Communication
  • Empathy
  • Problem Solving
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Creativity

What is your advice to young people who are considering working in this sector?

Get work experience as soon as your are able too. Getting a part-time job is so valuable to learn practical skills and builds a good work ethic. Helping out at home is also a good way to learn and develop your own initiative. This will help you in any sector you pursue.

Ask questions to those who are already working in your sector of interest. If you can, seek a mentor who can provide advice and support.

Remember there is no wrong path! You can have many different careers in one lifetime so as long as you work hard, have a positive attitude and act with integrity, you will be sought by all sectors.

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Here at DYW Moray, we'd like to encourage those of you who are employed in Moray to share your career story with us so that we can promote these to Moray's young people. Go on, share your career story now!

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