Customer Operations Manager - Campus Services - Student Accommodation - University of Birmingham
What do you enjoy most about working in student accommodation?
I love the variety of the role. No two days are ever the same and you never know what is going to crop up on a daily basis. I also love being that initial point of a students University journey. It is always a great honour to welcome new students to our Accommodation. The fact that their Accommodation is the very first impression a student gets of the University of Birmingham is a massive challenge but it is one that as an Accommodation Team we handle extremely well and the hard work and effort always pays of and we get great pleasure of seeing the happy faces and experiences of our residents each year.
Can you provide details about a specific student accommodation project that you’ve been involved in, that you’re really proud of?
One area that I helped develop previously was our Green Community, a dedicated area of our accommodation for students who are environmentally and sustainably focused and driven. I worked closely with the residents and one event in particular that was extremely successful was a Community Planting event where each flat were provided with some wild seeds to plant in a dedicated area of the Green Community. Finally one of the projects delivered to this area was a refurbishment of the sofas in the flats in a sustainable away. Instead of replacing with new, I had the sofas recovered in a sustainable Hemp material. A legacy story which goes down really well with residents. I was delighted to be able to improve the sustainability of this area and am working at rolling these features out to our other accommodation sites.
What does ASRA mean to you?
ASRA is an amazing community for us all to share our Student Accommodation experiences. It is also a wonderful resource in being able to find out answers or best practice from other providers in the industry. It is welcoming to all and shows me that there are always others out their dealing with similar issues to ourselves, issues which through ASRA are easily resolved with the knowledge of others who may have already dealt with something similar previously. It is a wonderful wealth of knowledge from like-minded professional colleagues in the industry.
What is your best ASRA memory?
The 2019 conference in Aviemore was absolutely amazing. It was my very first conference and I wasn’t sure what to expect. But from the very first day I felt welcomed and reassured to be surrounded by like minded people who were also very passionate about Student Accommodation and the industry we all work in. It was also fantastic to meet and speak with suppliers to our industry. I came away with some excellent ideas and things which I have been able to incorporate into our operation at University of Birmingham.
Thoughts on the future
I am looking forward to seeing how the industry will move forward, but I believe there will be a lot of exciting developments. I think technology will bring even more improvements to our industry and I think it will revolutionise the way our industry works.
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