I joined the Co-op four and a half years ago as a warehouse operative. For the last three years, I have been lucky enough to pursue my passion for driving, after I became a class 2 driver at Co-op's Castlewood depot.
I really enjoyed my time at the warehouse. There is a strong team culture as everyone works closely together. It was great to get to know so many people as part of a large team. Whilst in role, I was going through CPC driver training, which I funded myself. My end goal was to get my HGV license and kick start my driving career.
I didn’t want to leave the Co-op, so I spoke to the warehouse manager to see if they could support me in moving to a new area. Once I received my HGV license, I was fortunate enough to become a class 2 driver at the Co-op.
Warehouse to wheels
Before I started my training, I wasn’t aware that the Co-op already has a scheme called warehouse to wheels. The scheme supports colleagues to compete eight weeks of training to become an LGV Class 2 Licenced driver. This would have been something I considered, as I’ve heard lots of positive things from friends who have made the move to a driving role.
I absolutely love my job. I get allocated different routes everyday which sometimes can take me as far as Northampton or Skegness. I’m able to plan my day around my drops, like I’m my own boss. Having flexibility is one of my favourite benefits. Some routes can be easy and some very challenging. With our stores dotted around the country, sometimes, driving a lorry down country roads can be a challenge! But it’s great to meet local colleagues when I arrive.
Everyone in the depot is really supportive. The managers I’ve worked for have always encouraged me to progress my career. There’s no hierarchy in the depot and everyone is treated as peers, which I love. I’m really enjoying my job so I’m not looking to progress to a class 1 driver just yet, but it's something to think about for the future!