A young person just starting their career in the solid fuel sector has been nominated for one of the inaugural Bay Living Awards and could potentially become the ‘Apprentice of the Year’ in his local area of North West Lancashire and Morecambe Bay.
Dan Rutherford, aged 19, started an apprenticeship with Halton-based Logs Direct on October 6 2016, to back up his theoretical studies in a Level 2 Certificate in Warehousing and Storage from the North Lancs Training Group. This training was scheduled to end by February 4 2018, but Dan’s huge work ethic will see him complete everything way before this, even though Dan has chosen to voluntarily work on additional units, selected in conjunction with the Logs Direct team, and not just what was mandatory.
His embracing of learning opportunities has been second to none and he has completed hours of independent research and then applied this in the workplace. He has particularly relished learning about theories such as Kaizen and takt timing and used these within the busy Logs Direct warehouse, where he works both calmly and rationally. All in all, he is working at a much higher level than his Level 2 qualification dictates and always displays a positive attitude.
Excellent reports from his NLTG training officer, Lee Beveridge, and the team at Logs Direct have resulted. Dan has particularly excelled in stock taking, quickly grasping its importance to a warehousing environment and recognising its impact on a wholesale business. He has also fully appreciated how vital good health and safety practices are, whether that is when driving a fork-lift truck, lifting goods, shrink-wrapping products or stacking wood and finished items.
He has applied the principles of Kaizen, continually improving his daily performance in little ways that then create a large overall improvement over the course of several weeks. With an infectious enthusiasm, he is a delight to work with and an example to others.
Logs Direct’s sales director, Stephen Talbot, says: “Dan’s confidence has soared since he entered his apprenticeship, largely due to his own diligence and hard work. Thanks to having put so much in, he is getting a huge amount out of the training that he is receiving.
“He is the epitome of what a good apprentice should be and we would love to see him lift the Bay Living Award, as he deserves recognition for his efforts. He is a great role model for other apprentices just starting out in the solid fuel sector and a wonderful ambassador for apprenticeships in general.”
Dan says: “I was delighted to be given the opportunity to work with a national brand such as Logs Direct and have made sure I have gained as much from the experience as possible. To be nominated for a local award is amazing and something I never expected from this process.
“I have relished working with a busy employer that is serving customers nationally, influencing initiatives within the industry such as ‘Ready to Burn’ and always working at the sharp end of research and development. I have seen exciting new products, such as Brackenburn Brackettes and Coffee Logs, introduced to Logs Direct’s product list and have been able to learn all about these and the advantages they provide. Logs Direct has created a marvellous learning environment that has enabled me to grow both as an individual and as an apprentice.”