"I worked for DSGi for 21 years. I started there as a customer service supervisor, before moving on to support the systems on the help desk. I later transferred into the IT environment where I performed a number of roles including systems programmer, business analyst and programme implementation, for 12 years. This included covering EPOS, Payroll, own -brand and commercial planning systems.
"It was whilst I was in the commercial planning programme that I discovered supply chain, specifically product supply, and realised that I had been in the wrong job all along; finally, I found my niche.
"I managed both Domestic and Essentials categories for Currys and PC World, before joining Wickes two-and-a-half years ago as the DIY category supply manager. I have held the role of Head of Product Supply since August last year."
- Tarnia Carson
- Wickes Building Supplies
- Head of product supply
Q: What made you choose to join Wickes?
A: I love a challenge. When I started in the role, I felt that the systems, processes and people all needed a new perspective, and I saw the role as a wonderful way to make a difference.
Q: What is the basic function/purpose of your current role?
A: The purpose of my role is to support my team in delivering the right stock to the right stores at the right time and within budget, whilst managing the expectations of our internal and external customers by effective communication. My ultimate goal is to successfully deliver the auto-replenishment project across the Wickes business in 2012.
Q: How relevant were your qualifications to you getting the job?
A: I don't think qualifications really played a part in getting this job - it's all down to having the right experience. Qualifications are essential at the start of your career, but if you show the right experience and qualities for leadership, coupled with ambition and drive, you will always be successful.
Q: Describe some of the key tasks involved in performing your current role and the frequency with which you have to perform them.
A: My role requires several meetings: team meetings, functional meetings, steering and strategic meetings on a periodic basis. I also perform weekly supplier engagement as well as daily leadership and team development activities.
Q: What's the first thing you do when you arrive at work each day?
A: Firstly I always say good morning to the team! Following that I check the diary and ensure that I have everything set up for the day and then catch up on emails.
Q: How big is the team in which you work?
A: The team comprises seven members in the leadership team with a further 25 colleagues across category, project, store and systems analysis.
Q: Describe how your job interacts with the rest of your team.
A: My role is ultimately to lead and support my team, which can range from advice on particular issues and mitigation of risks, to dealing with escalated concerns and representing them across the business.
Q: How would you describe the working culture of your current employer?
A: The culture at Wickes is fantastic; it is supportive and keen to develop its colleagues across the board. It's a great place to work and I would describe it as an excellent example of how to work with people and an empowering environment to work in.
Q: What are your career aspirations for the future?
A: The role is yet to be created but I would ultimately love to be group product supply director.
Q: What do you like most about your current role and why?
The reason I chose to join Wickes is because I felt I could make a difference. Watching people develop and delivering to the targets set and then exceeding them all contributes to this.
Q: What did you/do you find hardest about your current role?
A: Recruiting the right leaders is very difficult, and the administration and diary management can be very time-consuming as we all manage these ourselves.
Q: How close do you think that the general public's view of your department is to the reality?
A: I often find it difficult to describe what we do to someone outside of the business. Their perception is that the stock is either in store or not, and those behind the scenes are very rarely drawn to the general public's attention.
Q: Would you recommend your employer to a friend and if so, why?
A: Yes, absolutely. You are empowered, trusted, celebrated and encouraged to achieve. Wickes has the feel of being a family firm, but with the power of the Travis Perkins group at your back - it's the best of both worlds.