Octopus Energy is made up of 3,000+ fantastic people working on stuff you'd never expect, all pushing hard towards a shared goal: driving the global green energy revolution. In our Spotlight series, we'll introduce you to some of the brilliant people behind the scenes. (Fancy joining them? Browse Octopus jobs!)
Octopus Energy Services are the brilliant team that bring our green products directly to our customer's homes. Meet Ceri, the team leader in charge of getting our smart meters and heat pumps from the warehouse to your front door.
Samsam: Hi, what is your current role at Octopus?
Ceri: I'm a Team Manager in our Distribution site for Octopus Energy Services, where I manage a team of 15 Drivers & Warehouse Ops Specialists.
Samsam: Cool! And what does your department do exactly?
Ceri: My team runs the end to end warehousing and distribution operations covering low carbon tech, like Solar installation systems and Heat Pumps. We cover everything from ordering the goods to making the final delivery. This lets our engineers dive straight into the installation once they're there.
Samsam: What drew you to Octopus and this role?
Ceri: I studied travel and tourism and worked in a bunch of different fields after college. I spent time working in retail, hospitality and even had a lovely job working in logistics for a florist. I applied at Octopus because I wanted to try something new. And with my background in logistics and management, this role made a lot of sense for me.
Samsam: You joined 6 months ago - how have you enjoyed your first half-year on the job?
Ceri: Yeah, I love it. A TV ad drew me in, and when I came in for my first interview, I just fell in love with the place. The vibe you get when you walk through the door is very different to anywhere else. It's just a really friendly place, and the people are lovely.
Samsam: Can you tell me a little bit more about your day to day?
Ceri: I get involved in all kinds of things. We’re constantly thinking of new ways to make our roles more efficient, so lately I’ve spent a lot of time introducing a new tech system and automation that will make everything run smoother. We are also switching up the teams so one shift picks, whilst another packs the items - that way they’re not in each other’s way. Most of my days are about managing how we’re working together, and developing ways to make it even better.
The main products we work with are heat pumps and solar panels. We work with different companies that supply us with the parts that we need, like copper fittings, cylinders and radiators to create an install pack. There are over 1,000 individual components from cables to radiators in a single install pack, bespoke for every install, we put great effort so our customers receive the best solution for their needs.
Our approach is to always put the customer first. We always go above and beyond to make sure they’re happy. Whether that’s sending them an Octopus plushie or delivering items early as a birthday gift.
Samsam: What lessons have you learnt?
Ceri: I’ve learnt so much being here. My problem solving skills are pretty great these days. There are days we get a last minute call to install a whole street of solar panel systems, which requires a lot of prep and organisation. Some installations can take days to complete so you can imagine how much equipment needs to be arranged. Managing my time can be quite challenging; our work requires a lot of time and attention to detail as we want to make sure each customer order is perfect. So, being well-organised is key!
Samsam: What has it been like managing a team of 15?
Ceri: Managing a big team and lots of logistics can be a lot; it requires a lot of foresight and thinking ahead. A lot of my role is problem solving and managing the logistics and challenges that come up on a day to day, so my team’s job is as easy as possible.
It’s super rewarding at the end of the day, when all the challenges have been solved, my team is happy and the customer gets the delivery and product perfectly.
Samsam: What is it like working with the team?
Ceri: Octopus Energy Services has about 750 members overall, and the wider team is constantly growing. I love working with my team. Everyone works really hard and goes above and beyond each day.
We always try to get the person that picked the job to deliver it as well. It adds a personal touch and it’s nice for them to see their hard work has paid off.
Ceri: I come from a family of plumbers as my dad and my brother own their own plumbing business, so it's nice to be able to talk to them about something related to their field. In the beginning, it was quite daunting. I remember thinking ‘well, how am I ever going to learn all these different types of cable and plumbing parts?’. But now, someone can read off a random part code and I know what it is. So I think it's really nice to have actually learned something completely different to what I'm used to.
Also, we’ve got a cool slide in the office that my kids love!
Samsam: What is the most fun and enjoyable part of your role?
Ceri: Every day is a new experience - and I like a challenge. It’s hard work but it’s nice to see that it pays off and our customers are happy.
I also love how much you can grow and develop in your role. They really spend the time and money on investing in people; it makes a difference.
Samsam: What is it like being a woman in a male-dominated field?
Ceri: To be honest, you don't really notice it on a day to day basis. I am sure this is because everyone's so welcoming and inviting. Plus, we are super careful when it comes to hiring, and we do our best to get kind and open people on our teams, so everyone gets along.
Samsam: Do you have any advice for anybody wanting to break into your field?
Ceri: I say just go for it! Jump in because you learn so much and it’s so worth it.
Quick Fire Round
Must-do work ritual?
Go around the building and see everyone and say good morning to everyone. I feel like I can't start work until I've actually said good morning to everyone.
Arts and crafts with my kids
What is your favourite place in the world?
Is this where I should say octopus? Haha
Well, besides Octopus I love Scotland, where my dad’s from.
What's one thing that you really want to do this year?
Complete my HR course, and take my kids to Italy.
A male penguin will search the whole beach for the most perfect pebble to give to a female penguin.