Before working in the Control Room, contact management operator Laura Frostick worked in retail for the convenience and stability it offered her and her daughter.
Now, a year into the role, she’s found her sense of purpose and is able to use her skills to make a difference.
"I have been working in the Control Room for about a year now and previously worked in retail where I was unhappy. I felt like I was trapped with no career purpose and accepted that I will always work in a retail environment because it was convenient and provided stability for me and my daughter. That is, until I saw an advert for the role of a call taker.
I initially held back and was convinced I wasn’t good enough for the role because I had less life experience at 20 years old. With a little encouragement from my old work colleagues and manager, it gave me the push I knew I needed to get out of my comfort zone, and
I applied for the role in May 2022.
Although I didn’t get through the first intake, I persevered, investigating the role, what it entailed, and I became fixated on getting through and not giving up. Thankfully I made it through to the second intake in October 2022 and while I was nervous at the start knowing how much responsibility there is with the role, I am loving it more than ever. It’s a different challenge every day.
One of the things I love about my job is the flexibility of shifts allowing me to have more time at home with my daughter. There’s also the satisfaction of knowing I’m coming to work for a purpose other than paying the bills, because this role is so rewarding.
We are the first point of contact from a member of the public in need of our help. The force simply can’t work without us, which is why our role is so important!
The are lots of positives to working within the Control Room. The staff are welcoming, friendly, and everyone knows each other – they really do become your second family. Everyone is also so supportive with work-related questions or even questions outside of work.
There are challenging times within the shift where the calls we received suddenly fluctuate, but we always have each other’s back and support everyone to ensure we get to those in need in a timely manner.
Some calls stick with you. Some are everyday problems that you can’t remember, but either-way we are here to give advice and ensure that members of the public are looked after and that we make choices for their best interest.
Taking emergency calls seems daunting, and I will be honest I was scared at putting people’s lives into my hands, but I have learned that my hands are safe, caring, and compassionate. I have no doubt that I will always have support and I’m no longer afraid to ask for help when I need it.
Applying for this job has also changed my thoughts on my capabilities and self-confidence. I am not the same person I was a year ago when I first started, and I will be forever grateful for what this job has offered me mentally and physically."