Alice hits the ground running as Employment & Skills Project Officer
"This is such an exciting role for me because I can really use my experience to help Warwickshire businesses"
Alice Edwards has a passion for helping people and loves getting her teeth into new projects - two attributes ideally suited to her role in Warwickshire County Council's Economy & Skills team.
As Employment & Skills Project Officer, Alice is deeply involved in a number of programmes.
Alice has plenty on her plate, with multiple projects to oversee such as the Coventry and Warwickshire Redundancy Service and Warwickshire’s Apprenticeship offer to businesses. From the moment she landed in her new team there has been loads to do - but that’s just how she likes it.
Although new to the E&S team, Alice is not new to the council, having moved across from the Health, Safety & Wellbeing team where she was Senior Wellbeing Officer. That means she arrived in her new role armed with considerable sector knowledge and experience from within the council where she has long impressed with her ability to think quickly, generate ideas and put them into practice.
Given first sight of a new project, Alice's eagerness to get involved and make a difference shines out.
"This is such an exciting role for me because I can really use my experience to help Warwickshire businesses," she said.
"There is so much great support available to businesses and education providers, both from the council and our partner organisations, So it’s a case of shouting about what we do and sharing information about our support and projects we are launching.
"I started off in the admin team in Public Health where I worked on many different projects, so that was great experience. There was lots of juggling and prioritising, so that gave me a really broad understanding of how the council worked, both internally and with different partners externally."
Among Alice's strengths is her background in wellbeing which could not be more valuable as the Warwickshire businesses face the sustained pressures of the pandemic and another lockdown. The protection of mental health, of both employers and employees, has never been more important, so Alice is a very timely addition to the Employability & Skills team.
Since her student days as a voluntary wellbeing champion at the University of Cardiff, her passion has been to protect and support others.
"Some of my friends have small businesses and seeing the stress they are under in lockdown has been a real eye-opener," she said. "It made me think how many businesses are in that situation and I am really excited to now have a role where I can do something to help and support them.
"When I became Senior Wellbeing Officer, it was perfect for me because I was always really passionate about mental health. People need to know that it is completely normal to struggle sometimes. At any one time, one in six workers has a mental health problem. You go to the doctor to talk about your physical health but people aren't so open to talk about their mental health."
"A lot of businesses know they need to do something around mental health but don't know where to start, which creates a skills gap that myself and the Employability and Skills team can work to support on. A blend of signposting to Warwickshire’s existing services, along with new services and workshops linking to our colleagues in Public Health and the Wellbeing team, means that we can respond really quickly to business needs which is going to play such an important role as lockdown lifts."