Career change for Doncaster mum of five who thought it was too late

A woman from Scawthorpe who dreamt of a new career challenge but thought it could be too late for her is celebrating after landing the ‘ideal’ apprenticeship with a Doncaster firm.

Tuesday, 9th July 2019, 3:23 pm
Updated Tuesday, 16th July 2019, 5:57 pm

Debbie Strutt, aged 42, has been appointed as an administration apprentice with Bentley-based Signum Facilities Management, while she also studies for her Business Administration Diploma Level 2.

Debbie, who has been married to Adam for 16 years and has five children Daniel (21), Jack (19), Luke (17), Kyle (15) and Lily-Mai (12), said: “When I first left school, I worked in an office until I had my first child and I really enjoyed the work and always planned to go back to it but as I had more children, I took a job at my local shop as a retail assistant. It was extremely convenient being just over the road from where I live and I ended up working there for almost 15 years. Although I did enjoy my job and loved the people I worked with, I never really felt settled or fulfilled.

“Having all those years away from an office setting made me think I had no way back into it, so I began looking for online training courses I could do to refresh my skills. Whilst on the college website I came across the advertisement for the apprenticeship with Signum Facilities Management.

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Debbie Strutt and Jill Wood

“It sort of fell into place just at the right time. The job description was ideal and exactly to the letter of what I was looking for. I had made my mind up that it was now or never so I put in my application and after visiting Signum Facilities Management for interview and speaking to Jill and Ian who immediately put me at ease, I couldn’t have felt better.

“When I received the phone call to say I had got the position I was over the moon. As I progress within Signum and complete my apprenticeship I would really love to continue learning both about the company and maybe the next level Business Administration or Finance. I had begun to think I’d left a change in career too late but in a few short months I’ve completely changed direction and I’m in a role I feel completely happy in. It’s given me a new lease of life!”

Jill Wood, managing director of Signum Facilities Management, said: “We are delighted to welcome Debbie to the Signum team and so pleased that it has provided her with an opportunity to achieve her career aspirations. We strongly believe in nurturing our staff and helping them to grow and develop their careers, so we hope this is just the start for Debbie.

“As Debbie quite rightly says, it is never too late to make change in direction and she has proved this with her determination and proactive approach. I would encourage people of any age who may be in a similar position to Debbie and looking for something different to consider the apprenticeship route.”

Signum FM provides planned and reactive maintenance services for businesses and schools across Yorkshire. For further information, visit