When did you join Specsavers?
I joined Specsavers in July 2012, after I finished my A-levels.
What was it about the company that made you want to join?
Myself and my family have always used Specsavers for our own needs. I also had a family friend who worked at Specsavers who both recommended the company to me and recommended me to the company.
Describe your career journey so far:
In 2012, I started at Specsavers Sutton-in-Ashfield where I was a ‘meet and greeter’ at weekends. I then went on to become a full-time member of the optical/retail team as an Optical Assistant. I eventually trained and worked in most departments of the store and, through the company, I completed a Level 3 Diploma in Ophthalmic Dispensing. Whilst at Sutton-in-Ashfield, the opportunity arose to become a Hearcare Assistant, I was successful in the application for this role and, again through the company, did a Level 4 Diploma to qualify for the position.
Once I had a taste for the Audiology side of the business, I wanted to take my career in this area even further. Therefore, I moved to the Nottingham store as they were looking to take on a Hearcare Assistant to train into a Hearing Aid Dispenser. I studied alongside my work to achieve a foundation degree and qualified as a Hearing Aid Dispenser in 2016.
I wanted to continue my studies within Audiology, so I then studied for a further year alongside work to accomplish my bachelor’s degree in Audiology, which I completed in 2018.
How has Specsavers supported you in achieving your goals?
Specsavers have never made me feel like any goal is unrealistic or out of reach and have supported me every step of the way. They have done that in more ways than one – from funding courses, allowing me to have time off work and accommodating my holidays to being genuinely nice people and always being there for me for advice and help…both as colleagues and as friends.
Why did you choose a career in Audiology?
I never had a set career path and, even in college, I had a handful of jobs that interested me. I was never 100% sure which way to go and, therefore, didn’t take the traditional path and go to university after college. When the Hearcare Assistant role came up, I initially saw it as an opportunity to have more variety in my job and to gain more knowledge but soon became keen to learn more.
Audiology is a field that is expanding and interests me greatly. The daily job is both challenging and rewarding and I love all aspects of it. Every day varies, every appointment varies and every customer varies which makes each day interesting. It’s also a job that allows me to interact with so many wonderful people and not only meet them, but actually help them!
What’s your next career goal?
Currently, I want to spend time focusing on my job in order to become a better and more knowledgeable clinician. Audiology is a career where there will always be more to learn. My studies may be completed for the time being, but my development will continue for the duration of my career and I look forward to growing with the field.
Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?
In five years-time, I hope to see myself continuing to love and enjoy what I do and, although I have no official next steps planned, goals I have considered for the future include studying for a master’s degree to specialise in a certain area of Audiology and learning British Sign Language.
Describe the culture of Specsavers in three words:
Team, commitment, evolving.
What would you say to anyone reading this who is inspired by your story?
Don’t ever think that this couldn’t be you. You may not have a goal or a dream job but it doesn’t mean it isn’t out there. I never knew what I wanted to do but I have achieved more than I ever imagined I would over the past 6 years. Before this career and the opportunities that have arisen for me, I never thought I would be a qualified professional with a BSc (Hons) degree and I am thankful for it every single day.