Employee Spotlight - Meet Sam
I started in my role at S3Solutions last July and I have loved every minute of the last 12 months. Find out more about my journey below.
My Roles and Responsibilities
At S3Solutions I am a Client Advisor within the Core Retained Service and my portfolio of 32 clients includes clients from right across Northern Ireland from Omagh to North Down. I work with everything from large charities, sports clubs and community associations. The vast majority of my work is sourcing funding to facilitate programmes and allow opportunities to undertake capital development work. Each group has one key contact and I work closely with this individual as we agree a work plan based on their needs.
As someone who has experience of volunteering for third sector organisations, I am all too well aware of the challenges they face and I like to think that because I have first hand experience of this that I can help my clients to overcome hurdles and ensure that they continue to do what they do best – continue working with people within their local communities.
What has your experience been like to date?
I graduated seven years ago this month from the University of Stirling in Scotland after undertaking a Journalism Studies course. I worked in the local media in every county in NI and in 2017 I decided I wanted a new challenge and that duly arrived with S3Solutions in the summer of 2017!
The last 12 months has been an incredible learning curve and in my first few months I developed a greater understanding in the detail required within funding applications, developing work plans and the processes around capital development.
Recently I have become heavily involved in sales and I’ve also started working on some consultancy work and helping to make positive changes in the lives of those involved in third sector organisations. I relish a challenge and at times I’ve been thrown in at the deep end but the support and guidance from all the staff is brilliant and it makes the office a brilliant place to work in!
Why did you decide to start working for S3?
I had worked in the media industry for 6 years and after working in a newspaper for 3 years I just decided that it was time to look for a career path outside of the media. I had worked as a volunteer coach and committee member at Ballinamallard United FC for over 10 years and S3Solutions had worked closely with the club and had secured some significant funding to help with the development of the club.
I was always intrigued about funding and where it came from and how you could secure it and when an opportunity arose with S3Solutions I didn’t hesitate to apply.
What do you enjoy about S3?
No day is ever the same in S3Solutions. You could be completing application forms for funding in the office, out on site at a capital development or travelling across Northern Ireland to meet clients! The day always flies by and sometimes there aren’t enough hours in the day to get all the work finished!
The office is a brilliant place to work in and there is always plenty of craic and lively discussions to keep everyone entertained!
Simple things like being able to work from home and working hours that suit you can help when trying to find the balance between work and life at home!
One of the most enjoyable things about working at S3 is our clients. There are so many characters from all walks of life from across Northern Ireland and further afield. They all have their own stories to tell and I love sitting down over a coffee and hearing about what they have got up and how we can help them going forward. I take great satisfaction from knowing that through our work we are making real change in communities across the island of Ireland.
What have been your biggest highlight since starting at S3?
Every one of my clients have different levels of need and every successfully funding application is a highlight. One group may have secured £100,000 for a capital project while another may have been awarded £1,000 for coach education. As someone who worked in third sector organisations in Ballinamallard and at the Fermanagh Super Cup, I know every penny counts and witnessing how that money transforms the lives of people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds is amazing.
On the lighter side, the day Mick was lost for words a few weeks ago was another major highlight and a day no one is ever likely to forget!
I’ve recently been involved in the Peace IV programme in Fermanagh and Omagh District Council and I was really proud to be involved in this project in my home county of Fermanagh. I am looking forward to staying involved in this project and witnessing the long term impact of the programme.
I’m really looking forward to continuing my own personal and professional development with S3Solutions and continuing to watch the business grow.
I’ve also just moved to a new house for the second time in 12 months and I’m looking forward to some well-deserved rest over the summer and finally finishing my UEFA B Coaching License in August!