Yasemin Sunbul

I joined Openreach as an Apprentice Network Planner back in 2014, straight for leaving High School.

My apprenticeship was a 2 and a half year in Network Design & Planning for the BDUK Scheme. I gained the equivalent to 2 A levels on completion. I completed my apprenticeship 9 months early as I was always ahead of my work and also won Openreach Apprentice of the Year in 2016.

I pushed myself throughout my apprenticeship as I knew I wanted to get stuck into different roles as soon as possible so I could build up my skills and network.

From this, I moved into an analytical role which was using data to find solutions for our planning teams to help them improve productivity and quality. Alongside this role, I joined a BT Scheme called Future Leaders which is a programme for high achievers to help progress into management, we each had or own learning group and would catch up monthly to discuss opportunities, skills and experiences.

Throughout my time on this scheme, I was promoted into a people management role where I had a team of 21 people. The main bulk of the team was down in Ilford with a few team members in Bedford and Walsall. This was a long way from home back in Lancashire but I decided to take this challenge on to stretch myself. I gained so many skills and got a lot of great feedback from my seniors who explained that I showed strong leadership qualities. I increased my teams performance by 40% within 2.5 months while maintaining the quality. I achieved this by consistent structure, setting up support mechanisms and setting expectations from the beginning – having a firm but fair approach.

I was next looking for a role that had more of a solution based/continuous improvement focus so I gained a role as a Ethernet Service Delivery Manager. I was accountable for driving service levels set by Ofcom for North West & Midlands. We went from a low performing team, to being one of the best teams in the North. I helped to transform the age of our workstack from 59 days to 35 working days and delivered 4.77% in H2 for H2. This was achieved by taking 319 tails down to 85 a 77% net reduction in 118 tails throughout the year.

Openreach is now currently going through a big re-organisation so there is a lot of structure and role change. I am currently sat within the Lancs & Cumbria team covering the Service Assurance Manager Role. This is similar to my previous Ethernet role but now I am looking after multiple products such as Newsites and ILC. My short term goal is to achieve the Service Assurance manager role – this would also mean a promotion for me.

Throughout my time in the company I have also been very helpful and offered advice to everyone. I love to speak at apprentice events as I enjoy inspiring other young people. I cant wait to take the next step in inspiring more people as I am currently in the process of enrolling to be a STEM Ambassador and Women of the Future Ambassador.

I am enjoying my career so far and have just started my Business Management Degree which was kindly funded by Openreach.