After 30 years working for a utilities company, Ken Anderson, Customer Service Adviser at Newbury Building Society's Basingstoke branch, was on the lookout for a change.
After dedicating more than 30 years to his position, Ken decided to take a step back to reflect on what he wanted to do next. As somone who thrives on engaging with people, he discovered he really missed interacting with customers and helping them to resolve their problems.
When he popped into the Society to open a new savings account, Ken realised they were advertising for people to work in his local branch. He went for an interview, and the rest, as they say, is history!
We caught up with Ken to find out about what a day in his work life looks like, what he enjoys most about his job, and whether he’d recommend it to others.
What do you like most about your role at the Society?
"I wanted a role where I could speak and deal with people, and my role is perfect for that – I get to build rapport and relationships with our customers, especially our regular ones who have been coming into the branch for years. I’ve also built some brilliant friendships with my colleagues over the years and have even maintained friendships with people who no longer work in the branch.”
What skills do you need to work in a branch?
“Definitely adaptability – it’s an old cliché but no two days are the same! Being able to adapt to the busier periods, such as ISA season, as well as the quieter times, is a helpful skill. Getting on with people and building relationships with people of all ages is also really key. Our customers love us because they get to know the people who work here.”
What would surprise people about working for the Newbury?
“It’s such a personal place to work. I was made to feel very welcome when I first started, and even Phillippa, our CEO, makes an effort to learn your name and welcome you to the Society. It’s a really friendly atmosphere.”
How does your role at the branch fit into your life?
“I have now been working part-time after nearly 40 years of working full-time. This has been a big change for me which I am slowly adapting to, but having a supportive and adaptable manager in Lisa has really helped with the transition. Branch roles can be flexible nowadays, so it’s great for students, people who have maybe been off or away from work for a long time, or even people with young children.”
What piece of advice would you give to people who are unsure about a role in finance?
“Definitely to not be afraid if you’ve not got a finance background. I hadn’t worked in finance before either. Newbury provides great training and it’s all about the journey and learning.”
Working for Newbury Building Society
Head over to our careers vacancies page to find out more about our current branch vacancies.