Celebrating 6 months since the beginning of our ‘Grow our own’ Programme

‘Grow our own’ is our training initiative that will help us to develop our workforce of the future by providing a holistic training experience, giving trainees an excellent grounding in the role, the organisation, and the sector in our unique way. Our Grow our own opportunities provide trainees with a unique chance to play a part in making a difference whilst gaining invaluable work experience. At the end of the trainee Programme candidates will be fully prepared for the next step in their career, whether with us at Wales & West Housing, or elsewhere. 

6 months on from the successful recruitment of our first Grow our own job vacancies, we caught up with Trainee Data Analysts Isaac Parr and Elliott Danby to find out how things are going:


Q: Has the role matched your expectations from 6 months ago?

Isaac: Six months ago, my expectations were that I would not get too much exposure to any of what the team does and I would be constantly monitored and checked up upon. However, the amount of responsibility that I have been given has really pleasantly surprised me. It is great to feel trusted and to be a useful member of the team.

Elliot: The role itself is pretty much exactly what I expected it to be; I knew I wanted a role that was heavily Excel based as I am very confident and skilled with that software.

I’d say that perhaps I wasn’t expecting so much responsibility and independence as soon as 3 months in, but that’s something I very much welcome. I hear stories from friends about being coddled throughout their grad scheme and then when the stabilisers are removed, they find it all a bit much. Plus, it’s awesome to know that your team trust you enough to let you get on with work that actually matters.

Q: How would you describe your overall induction into the organisation? 

Elliot: Very thorough. I joined at a really good time as straight after my standard induction courses, we had the debut staff festival. That was the best intro to the company I could ask for. Loads of talks and meetings with different departments with the option to pick and choose which events appealed to me.

I started WWH just as people were starting to return to the office after Covid-19 had everyone working remotely, so I met colleagues in drips rather than all at once. I have to say that even though there are loads of people I still haven’t met, I feel really welcome here, and I already have connections in loads of different departments.

Isaac: Really thorough. As a graduate with no background in the housing industry I was worried that I may be at a disadvantage. However, the induction gave me all the information that I needed (and more) and I left knowing what is expected of me and the values that are appreciated at WWHG.

Q: What is your favourite thing about working for Wales & West Housing Group (WWHG)?

Isaac: I know it is a massive cliché but honestly the people here. Everyone is so friendly and genuine, it has made me feel so welcome over the past 6 months. Knowing that I can approach anyone both internal and external to my team for help is really reassuring and has helped build my confidence massively!

Elliot: Working for a company that actually makes a difference! So many of my friends work for companies that sing about all of their positive contributions, but don’t ever back it up. I love that everything is transparent, and as a non-profit company, our revenue goes toward improving service to the actual people who need it. All of our spending is completely open and is available for all employees to see.

I also have to say the people who work for Wales & West. Everyone here is lovely and you can see the core values of the company in everyone who works here.

Q: Would you recommend a trainee role with WWHG to others?

Elliot: 100%. I think it’s a great company to work for, and as a company to start your career at it’s a dream. It helps that it’s a relatively small company; you can get to know people a lot quicker, and you can gain a contact in each department relatively quickly. There is also the opportunity for a lot of further training – development is very much encouraged here.

Isaac: Definitely! It has been everything I could’ve hoped for as the first step in my career!

Dan Ryan