There are three, not two things, in life that are certain: death, taxes and waste. Having 8 billion people in our world means we create an unimaginable amount of waste, and the need of a huge workforce who knows how to handle it.
The waste industry has traditionally been male-dominated but it is important to have a diverse workforce that not only cares about our environment but also gives us different perspectives.
People that come from all walks of life can provide us different insights that helps us innovate, finding more efficient and creative solutions to problems.
So, on International Women’s Day, Yorwaste is celebrating the women we work with. Let’s hear what they like about working in the waste industry and gain some new insights into the world of waste.
‘’I make sure people put things in the right places, safely disposing of commercial and household waste. I absolutely love it, it’s a brilliant job.’’
— Beth, Site Operative
‘’I’m being really active which is fantastic.’’ Site Operative Beth said. She works at Seamer Carr Household Waste Recycling Centre and helps customers safely dispose of their household and commercial waste and empty skips. She enjoys working outside and loves being really active in her job. ‘’I get loads of steps in a day, I think on an average day I do between 20,000 to 25,000 steps. I don’t go home and go to the gym, I go home and sit down and have a cup of tea!’’
‘’I find it very interesting. It is different every day, you come across different scenarios.’’
— Debbie, Southern Area Supervisor
Debbie has been the Southern Area Supervisor of the Household Waste Recycling Centres since 2010. She started off working at one of the landfills then progressed over to the household waste side. Waste disposal is an essential service to everyone. For Debbie, this is a secure business with job security.
Being in her position means she can meet a lot of people in the sites because everyone brings their waste to the Household Waste Recycling Centre: whether it is a loving father trying to dispose of a DIY project of his child’s room, or a hard-working tradesman who’s unloading waste from their vans. No day is the same working in the Household Waste Recycling Centres because there are always fresh faces to work with.
On the other side at our Harewood Whin Waste Transfer Station, Tina works as a Weighbridge Operative and she said it’s the one-to-one interactions with different types of customers that attracts her to her job.
As a Weighbridge Operative, she is responsible for recording the inbound and outbound waste tonnage at our site, making sure the drivers are tipping their waste in the right places.
In addition, she also works with contractors who come to site taking care of their work orders; making sure they complete their work and get paid properly. There’s always something new and interesting waiting for her.
‘’You wouldn’t think waste meant that much but it does.’’
— Tina, Weighbridge Operative
For most people, the waste journeys end in the rubbish bins. But working in the waste industry tells Tina so much more about what happens afterwards. She has learnt a lot of recycling knowledge that she never knew before!
Learning about recycling and educating the public about it can take us further into a sustainable, clean environment for the better of our future. ‘’We give lots of advice to the public on recycling.’’ Beth said. It’s part of her daily job to guide the public to put things in the right places.
Lorna, our Team Leader at the Hazel Court Household Waste Recycling Centre said her biggest enjoyment from working here is to help other people recycle. ‘’I have learnt a lot of things. I have even learned how to sign language to help a lot of customers,’’ she said.
‘’I feel that I am valued and respected at Yorwaste and I do feel part of the Yorwaste family.’’
— Caroline, Site Administration Controller
Caroline is our Site Administration Controller who started as a temporary Admin 9 years ago. She quickly became full time and was promoted to Senior Administrator, looking after all transfer site admin functions. Caroline was encouraged to complete an NVQ Level 3 and 4 in Business Administration, enhancing her own skills and personal development. Now, Caroline is the Site Administration Controller, looking after all of the weighbridges and the Operation Administrators within the operations team.
Have everyone’s stories given you some insights of what it is like to work in the waste industry?
Waste collection is part of our daily life, but you wouldn’t know what happens behind the scenes until you see it for yourself! We have made a video sharing everyone’s stories if you would like to see more.
If you are interested, please click here to check out our careers page and find out more details.