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Charlie West

I started working with Aggregate Industries in September 2014 after graduating from Sheffield Hallam University with a degree in Energy Engineering for Sustainability. I was offered a place on the Graduate Management Programme a month before I completed my final exams which really helped me to focus on achieving the results I wanted.

One of the main things that appealed to me about Aggregate Industries was that they look to employ people for the long term and encourage personal development along the way. I didn’t know which career path I was best suited to follow and the graduate scheme offered me the opportunity to experience several parts of the business, helping me to obtain a greater understanding of the industry before deciding which route to pursue within the Company.

My first placement involved working at the flagship Bardon Hill Quarry in Leicestershire where I had the opportunity to work alongside both the management team and various other people around site.  I gained an understanding of the requirements associated with Quarry Management and having had no previous experience of the industry, this placement in an operational environment really helped me to get to grips with how the extractives and minerals processing industry worked. I was asked to fully review the Company’s Integrated Management System throughout the site which allowed me to get involved in matters relating to the management, health and safety, environmental, and quality aspects of the whole site and in particular, really appreciate the importance of health and safety.

For my second placement, I moved into our Express Asphalt business. This gave me a chance to see a completely different side of the Aggregate Industries business. I was given a project of significant importance to do with assessing ideas for new services that we could potentially offer to our customers. I was required to operate on a national basis and I had access to all of our Express Asphalt sites across the country. Working in a much more commercial environment, I had the opportunity to go out and meet many of our customers which helped me to learn how to apply my skills in completely different situations.

I have just started my final placement which I am spending in the South of the country, working as part of the Operational Excellence team. This will allow me to get exposure to many of our different sites and work closely alongside our Regional Maintenance Manager to develop my operational knowledge.

In addition to the projects I have completed during my time with Aggregate Industries, my development has been supported through various training courses and qualifications. I have most recently completed a Diploma in Mineral Extraction Studies at the University of Derby, as well as completing the IOSH Managing Safely Course and the EPC Shotfiring Course.  

One of the things that has most struck me since working for Aggregate Industries is the sheer size and diversity of the Company’s operations; especially as we are now part of the newly formed LafargeHolcim group, the world’s largest supplier of building materials. A Company this size presents endless possibilities to develop, progress, and forge a successful career in the construction industry. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with Aggregate Industries to date and I am looking forward to moving into a permanent position at the end of my Graduate Management Programme and enjoy a long and successful career within the group.

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