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Getting stuck in

I’ve worked at Co-op for the last 10 years, and I’ve really enjoyed my time here. I started as an agency warehouse operative based at Thurrock depot, and I moved into a permanent position after a year on the job. After that, I spent 8 years working in every warehouse role available, from desk operator to forklift driver. In fact, I was one of the first women at my depot to take on a forklift driver role, and it started a trend amongst our other female colleagues, which is something I’m really proud of.

Onwards and upwards

I noticed Co-op were recruiting for their Class 2 LGV driver apprenticeship scheme, so I decided to apply, but I was hesitant at first. I was worried about joining a male-dominated industry, but nonetheless, I stuck with it. I was determined to challenge myself and keep moving forwards, and I ended up passing the course in June 2020. It’s had an amazing impact on the rest of the business, especially at my depot in Thurrock, and more and more women have followed in my footsteps. It’s a great feeling.

Joining the Biggleswade depot team

Not long after completing my Class 2 LGV Driver apprenticeship, I heard about Co-op opening their new Biggleswade depot. I applied for the Driver Assessor position, part of the start-up team for a period of 8 months. When I’ve finished the secondment, I’m hoping I’ll be able to move into a permanent permanent driver assessor. It’s a great opportunity for me to challenge myself and gain even more experience, and I’m already settling and getting to know the rest of the team. I’m excited to see where my new role takes me.

Lena Olzacka, Biggleswade Driver Assessor 

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