Take ten with Richard Carmichael, North Tyneside Partnership Director for Capita Local Public Services
Life at Capita…
1. Tell us about your role at Capita Local Public Services?
I’m the Partnership Director for Capita’s partnership with North Tyneside Council, which means I’m responsible for the delivery of our 15-year contract with the council. We deliver a range of technical services for the local authority, namely: engineering and highways; strategic property and asset management; planning; building control; and public protection (environmental health, licensing and trading standards). Outside of this Partnership, from our base in North Tyneside, we also deliver these services for a variety of other public and private sector clients.
2. What is your biggest success or proudest moment at Capita?
I have overall responsibility for ensuring the successful delivery of major engineering projects, and I’m particularly proud of how we transformed both their delivery and communication. For example, the A191 Whitley Road/Front Street Improvement Scheme in Benton, was delivered by our own in-house team ahead of schedule, on budget, and with effective community engagement throughout. The team won a Considerate Constructor Award and North Tyneside Customer Service Award, which was well-deserved recognition. The team continue to build on this success and are currently on site delivering over £15m worth of major highways improvements across the borough of North Tyneside.
3. If you could describe Capita in three words, what would it be?
Fast-paced, adaptable and rewarding
4. What do you like most about your role?
It’s the variety of the job that I enjoy the most – every day is different. First and foremost though, I like the people I work with, which given the amount of time we spend with each other is absolutely key. My role affords me the opportunity to work with colleagues at all levels of the business and each one of them contributes to our success in some way.
5. Tell us something people might not know about Capita Local Public Services?
As a partner to North Tyneside Council, we are also a ‘corporate parent’. That means we have certain responsibilities around looked after children in the borough. In simple terms we have collective responsibility (with the local authority, elected members, employees and other partner agencies) for providing the best possible care and safeguarding for the children who are looked after by the council. As part of our contribution we recently sponsored the North East Regional Children in Care Council Conference attended by the Children’s Commissioner and representatives of all the North East local authorities. This was the first time in England that a conference led by our looked after children had been held. It was a fantastic success and something the commissioner was keen to see rolled-out in other regions.
6. When you were a child, what did you dream of being when you grew up?
I probably dreamt of being a footballer but I actually wanted to be a meteorologist. I just really liked the idea of being on television, however I wasn’t particularly good at science so it never happened. I certainly don’t crave the limelight anymore, although I have appeared on a number of YouTube videos to provide North Tyneside residents with updates on some of our major road schemes.
7. What do you do in your spare time?
I still like to play football and enjoy five-a-side albeit with aging limbs and two young children it’s difficult to do. I also like watching films with the most recent trip to the cinema with my son to see his first Star Wars film, Rogue One, which we both enjoyed. Between Bladerunner 2049. Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Alien Covenant and Despicable Me 3 – I’ll be at the pictures quite a bit in 2017
8. If you had to eat just one meal for the rest of your life what would it be?
Thai Green Curry. It’s dish that I do like to try and make myself – with varying degrees of success
9. What was the best piece of advice you ever received?
Learn by doing rather than living other people’s lives – it’s a piece of advice that has always stayed with me.
10. Tell us something people might not know about you
I’m a big big fan of the NFL. Every Sunday night from September to February I’ll quite happily sit and watch the back to back matches on Sky, which given that it starts at 5.30pm and goes on past midnight is often the cause of ‘interesting’ family discussions about what’s on the telly. Superbowl 51 is coming up, and it’s difficult to see past the Patriots!