Linda Jennings, BIFM Level 3 Graduate, shares her story
Linda first learned about Facilities when I did 2 weeks work experience in the facilities department of a bank when I was 16 and I loved it. When I finished school I returned to the same bank to work in the facilities department as a facilities assistant and from there progressed onto to work as facilities coordinator.
"I spent some time travelling for a number of years and when I returned home I was lucky enough to be asked to work as facilities coordinator in another bank from a previous contact."
After one year in that position, Linda was asked to assist setting up a new facilities helpdesk for an outsourced facilities company who had just been awarded a huge contract in Ireland. "Once the helpdesk was set up I stayed on as the supervisor and remained in this position for over 10 years until 2017."
"Having loved every role I had throughout the years I never felt the need to study. With a family of my own it was difficult to find extra time but as the kids got older it became easier."
Linda chose to study Facilities Management at Portobello Institute to gain a better understanding of all areas involved within facilities. She found the course extremely beneficial. As every module was covered, found her day to day job becoming easier. She was more confident in her decision making and advice and felt she could engage more in regular meetings.
"I was unsure at the beginning whether to start with Level 3 or level 4 but I'm glad to have started with level 3 course. It was a great introduction to the world of study, allowing me to alter my routine to include study and assignments. Now knowing what to expect from future studies, I'm sure that will be an advantage where I can focus more on the content of the course."
Linda found the course content straightforward and the experience of studying and working on assignments to a deadline was difficult at times on top of working full time and looking after a house and 3 kids but it was achievable and hugely rewarding every time an assignment was submitted.
"The course content was extremely relevant to the area I was working in within outsourced facilities. Every module contained content which I touched on every single day in work. The support from the college was great. Every tutor and the programme manager continuously reminded us that they were always available to answer any questions and look over papers for us for reassurance and advice."
"I have learned so much which has given me great confidence and understanding with regard to all aspects of running a building and managing projects, whether that be in work or at home."
"The whole experience has been great for me. I have taken a career break since completing the course to spend more time with my children and also to up skill further so I can return to work in a facilities role with more responsibility than I had previously."
Having no previous experience of study, while working full time, having a family to look after, not having much time to get out to attend class, this was the ideal course for Linda.
"I would absolutely recommend this course and I plan to continue studying and progressing on through Portobello Institute. Once my kids are a little older, I can't wait to get back to working in facilities in an FM role."
"The added confidence I have gained by doing this course feels great. My husband and kids are very proud of me. They have watched me studying and working on assignments at every chance I could get and I can see that it was very rewarding for them also when I passed a module."
To start your facilities journey or for progression opportunities please contact Lynda O'Neill on 01 8920020 or firstname.lastname@example.org