After successfully winning the maintenance contract for the Kings Hill Estate at the end of last year, the Strata team began 2022 by mobilising the existing team for delivery, as well as transferring current site-based operatives into the company from the previous provider.
Stuart Cherrison is our newly appointed Multi-Skilled Gas Engineer, having worked at the Kings Hill site for the last 15 years, he has already got a good relationship with the tenants and extensive knowledge of the site.
We caught up with Stuart to find out more about his background and how he has found the transition into the Strata team.
How did you get into the industry and what has your experience been like?
I first joined the industry in 1992, working for a company called Blue Circle. Having left college with qualifications in Sport and Leisure Management, my dad encouraged me to join his company whilst I searched for a Coaching job. This was a turnaround point for me as I ended up continuing my career in maintenance and after leaving Blue Circle, I worked for the John Lewis maintenance team and Dale Kier before joining Liberty as a Fabric Technician in 2007.
Whilst working on the Kings Hill Estate for Liberty, I undertook the relevant qualifications to become a Gas Safe Engineer and have remained at the site ever since.
How has your role changed within 15 years you have been based at the Kings Hill Estate?
My initial role as a Fabric Technician included assisting with the pre-planned and reactive maintenance jobs on site, and I also got involved in typical handyman jobs, fixing anything which had been reported as broken.
In my current role as a qualified Multi-Skilled Gas Engineer, I provide maintenance support to the prestigious clients at Kings Hill undertaking Annual, Quarterly , Monthly and Weekly planned preventative maintenance and reactive works, for HVAC, gas, plumbing, electrical, carpentry and all general maintenance repairs. I liaise with the client, tenants and sub-contractors, generating pricing for quotations and access to the properties and plant areas. Since the transition to Strata I have assisted with the standardisation of planned works, verification of asset registers and creation of site information for working plans.
How have you found your first 5 months at Strata?
The TUPE transfer process took place around 3rd January 2022 and it brought a breath of fresh air to my career. Strata is a lot more organised than the former maintenance provider for Kings Hill and they have helpful staff like Hannah, who are dedicated to supporting us on a day-to-day basis.
I previously knew Martin, Nathan, Tracey and Nick from working at the site over the years, but every new face I have met has been friendly and I have settled into the Strata team really quickly.
To summarise, becoming a member of the team has been refreshing and I enjoy the supportive company culture they have.
What is a typical day like for you at Strata?
Every day is different, but generally my day will consist of undertaking my scheduled planned maintenance tasks and dealing with any reactive maintenance needs called in by the tenants. This includes dealing with building fabric repairs, heating and plumbing issue or supporting minor electrical repairs. Each day provides a new challenge which is something I have always enjoyed about the job.
There is a lot of interaction with the tenants during the day. Over lockdown, we didn’t get to see them and so welcoming them back onto the site has been great as they provide so much job satisfaction and are always grateful for our services. I have a good relationship with the tenants and manage their expectations with open and honest communication, giving them realistic timescales for outcomes.
Where do you see your career going in the future?
In the five months that I have been a Strata employee, I have already witnessed the supportive culture here and would like to think that there is room for progression for me within Strata. I hope to possibly upskill further by completing the relevant courses to become a qualified electrician. With the current push towards electric rather than gas, I think it would be useful to develop a further understanding of electrical.