I chose to join Centrica as a commercial analyst graduate as it is a great opportunity to start my career within the energy industry with a company that is committed to the future and exhibits a strong commitment to core values that I believe in. The diverse range of business units within Centrica Group promised an incredibly rich environment for me to move through different roles in my graduate scheme and learn a huge amount about the traditional energy supply sector, the emerging renewables sector and the smart energy management sector to name a few. Being part of a diverse and connected graduate cohort was also important to me as I knew I could utilise this network to expand my insight into different activities performed across the business such as management and marketing. The social side of a large graduate community has also been a massive benefit when transitioning into a larger company.
As a graduate, my first 8-month placement has been in the British Gas Revenue Protection Unit within the commercial and strategy team. My key responsibilities within this role have been undertaking data analysis to provide accurate insights used to support business decisions, identifying opportunities for optimisation or improvement of current data or operational processes and also delivering automated processes to reduce the workload of support teams within the unit. A project I have enjoyed working on has been introducing a new process for using smart meter data alerts to generate leads on potential instances of energy theft. The purpose of the revenue protection unit is to minimise the amount of energy that is being stolen by British Gas customers, usually through meter tampering. By utilising smart data alerts we can take advantage of the mandated smart meter rollout to ensure we remain as the industry-leading team within the UK energy supply market. The project has exposed me to big data infrastructure, allowed me to expand my network by working with teams across British Gas and the project will develop into a legacy process that allows me to leave a tangible outcome behind when I move into my next placement.
Since joining Centrica I have received invaluable investment in training and upskilling, enabling me to perform my role to the highest standards possible. I have the opportunity to use the vast quantity of resources available to complete courses within my own time as well as attending training sessions offered to the graduate cohort. I have developed my skills in Excel, Python and PowerBI for data processing and visualisation, and in SQL for data extraction. There has also been a commitment to the development of my softer skills through workshops such as 'Communicating with Impact' and 'IamRemarkable'. If there are skills you wish to improve, it is very easy to reach out to fellow colleagues in order to arrange upskilling sessions. For example, this year I have organised and facilitated training sessions in SQL and PowerBI led by fellow analyst graduates upon request from across other graduate streams. These sessions were also opened up to the wider employee community following noted interest.
Since joining Centrica I have been proactive in participating in activities outside of my role and team. I have had the opportunity to lead the graduate cohort in participating in company-wide fundraising activities such as a virtual John O'Groats to Land's End Challenge. Upon joining the British Gas commercial team, I have spoken in the daily stand-up call to the 800 invitees on the subject of happiness in the workplace and how my personal passions of running and cycling have allowed me to develop a strong and positive mindset. This has now developed into a broader mental health group, which aims to support colleagues in the commercial team. I am also in the process of working in tandem with the Wellbeing and Flexible Working teams to develop a new initiative for all Centrica colleagues, with the aim of inspiring colleagues to interact and engage as a community outside of traditional environments. The initiative has been very well received by colleagues across Centrica and people of all levels of seniority have been incredibly supportive by offering time to help develop the idea.
I truly enjoy working at Centrica due to the commitment of the company to colleague wellbeing and providing an equitable environment for all employees to feel comfortable. The activities the business is taking to transition to a sustainable future allow employees to shape the global energy outlook and deliver tangible benefits through their roles. I have found the employee community to be very positive and supportive, which has been crucial in creating an environment for me to thrive as a graduate. I would highly recommend working for this company and I hope to see some new faces in the future!