With a diverse career spanning over 30 years and a range of sectors, Samantha Whitear now brings her expertise, skills, and charisma to her role as Business Administrator at Vinters. Whether she is busy sorting bank statements, ordering new parts, or doing the morale-boosting monthly food order for office snacks, Samantha is a key part of making sure things run smoothly at Vinters.
Championing such a vital role at the company, and having seen the team’s growth in the past three years, we were keen to find out more about Sam’s career history and how her current role is integral to everyday operations at Vinters.
Can you tell me a bit about your career history?
I have over 30 years of experience in both the private and public sectors, mostly in administrative and secretarial roles. From starting my working life in London, my career has ranged from working for an American stockbroker to working for the Church of England at Southwark Cathedral.
While bringing up my two children, I had a career break and completed a degree in Child Psychology, which saw me working in several schools in Kent. I then went on to work in the Housing Benefit Office for a local authority within the county, mainly assisting 16-24 year olds. Missing the buzz of London life, I returned to the capital and worked for Transport for London for 12 years.
After years of commuting and ready for my next challenge, I decided to look for local job opportunities. That’s when I came across Vinters.
When and how did you first hear about Vinters?
I heard about Vinters, called VooServers back then, on Kent Jobs. I was instantly interested and liked that it was local, nicely fitting into my new career aspirations, so I applied. I’ve been here since 5 March 2018, back when the Beast from the East was just finishing its thing!
What does your role as Business Administrator involve and how does it fit into the wider business?
I assist our Finance Director, Lynne, on a day-to-day basis in managing all things finance – from reconciling bank statements to purchasing equipment for clients and uniforms for the team.
Above all else, I would say the most important task is the monthly Tesco order for biscuits and drinks. Believe it or not, the pressure to get the proper biscuit is immense! Morale for a team, no matter how small, is very important.
What does a typical day look like for you?
It might sound cliché, but no two days are the same here. I could be sorting out licenses in the morning and then organising a social get together in the afternoon (in normal times, of course).
I see my role as a supportive one, not only for the Finance Director but also for the Service and Projects teams. Whilst I am the least technically minded of all of us, even I have gone from waving something in the air and asking, “What’s this?!” to saying, “I’ve ordered a HP 1TB 6G 7.2K 2.5″ SAS Dual Port Hard Drive which will be with you tomorrow” and know what I’m talking about!
As the Business Administrator, you are a vital part of the day-to-day life of the company. What do you enjoy most about your job?
From day one, I felt at home at Vinters. My favourite thing about my role here is keeping everything ticking over, whether that’s making sure there is enough hardware equipment or topping up the office refreshments. I also enjoy organising staff outings, though I’ve recently passed that responsibility over to another member of staff.
Tell us about your most memorable moment at Vinters so far.
One very memorable, and slightly embarrassing, moment for me was during my first week at Vinters. I was struggling to open a window in the office and, when I eventually got it open, two PC monitors accidentally went flying off of a shelf. Not a great start to my new job, but luckily nothing was broken!
What do you think is on the horizon for Vinters?
The team has grown tremendously in the three years I’ve been here. We’ve gone from a small office that we were growing out of on the first floor of The Maidstone Studios to a large executive office on the second floor with corporate displays. I don’t think it will be too long before we outgrow this space, as the business is going from strength to strength, and I hope to continue to be a part of that growth for years to come.
And what is on the horizon for you?
I’m currently working towards a qualification in bookkeeping & accountancy and I’m in my last year of the 3 year course. Unfortunately, the pandemic pulled the brakes on it, but I’m looking forward to the classroom opening up again soon!
Connect with Sam on LinkedIn, here.
By Sam Whitear on October 6th, 2021