In recent years the investment in highway infrastructure and its performance has been increasingly under the spotlight. The current financial challenges and increased public demands and expectations have meant that the way local highway authorities managed their highway infrastructure had to be re- considered. We caught up with Karen Cassar, technical director for Capita Local Public Services to find out more and how her role is supporting asset management strategies for our customers.
Life at Capita…
1. Tell us about your role at Capita Local Public Services?
In Capita Local Public Services we have a number of partnerships that provide technical services for local authorities. My role is to work alongside these partnerships to help implement highways asset management practices.
Our society and economy is underpinned by infrastructure assets - from water supply and waste disposal - to telecommunications and transport. This infrastructure is vital in modern society but requires significant investment for development and maintenance. Increasingly, strategies for managing highways assets are becoming recognised as an effective way to deliver highway services and manage these assets more successfully and efficiently.
2. What have you enjoyed most about working at Capita?
Having started working at Capita Local Public Services in August, I have really enjoyed meeting the teams and securing great relationships with my colleagues and our customers.
3. If you could describe Capita in three words, what would it be?
Innovative, ambitious and supportive.
4. What do you like most about your role?
Working across four of Capita’s technical services partnerships, I really enjoy the variety of my role. It is particularly rewarding to offer technical highways guidance and asset management practices that help councils on their journey to achieve funding for their region.
5. Tell us something people might not know about Capita Local Public Services?
The business really cares about their employees; actively encouraging their people to develop and grow in their role. They value their staff and listen to them.
Over to you…
6. When you were a child, what did you dream of being when you grew up?
A police officer. I am a fair person and want to see fairness being practiced in all aspects of life. Everyone matters, their opinions, their values and their well-being and as a manager my team is integral to our success. My mantra is; ‘I am only as good as my team and my team is only as good as the support, direction and guidance I invest into them.’
7. What do you do in your spare time?
I own a miniature schnauzer called Tizer who is loved dearly by all my family. A lot of my spare time is spent walking her, spending time with my family and socialising with friends. I am a keen swimmer and my goal is to try and swim at least 3 times a week. I enjoy company and sharing experiences with my family and friends but I also like time on my own to reflect, relax and read a good thriller book.
8. If you had to eat just one meal for the rest of your life what would it be?
I love eating cereal with fruit - that would be my one meal!
9. What was the best piece of advice you ever received?
‘There is no such word as can’t, try try try again until you succeed’
10. Tell us something people might not know about you
I love dogs and if I won the lottery I would have lots of dogs and breed lots of puppies – just don’t tell my husband!