General Manager Prisoner Transport - Transport jobs

One of the great things about being a General Manager is that no two days are ever the same, my contract is responsible for the prisoner transportation and in court management throughout South Australia and my role is to ensure that our key performance targets are met by delivering an efficient and cost effective operation.

The contract covers a large geographical area and we have staff deployed at various locations throughout the state. Our workload can vary considerably from one day to another and we need to be able to respond to peak demands, to do this we must ensure that we have right number of employees in the right location, effective planning of resources is essential to the success of the operation.

Due to the nature of our business we interact with numerous agencies on a daily basis, I attend monthly meetings with the agencies where we discuss the performance of the contract and look for initiatives which could further enhance the service that we provide. Customer focus is a given in my role and I get a huge amount of satisfaction from delivering an excellent service, I believe that you need to have a “can do” attitude and be willing to be adaptable to any change in the customer requirements.

Our business is about people, we need to ensure that we are looking after the people that work for us and the people in our care. Whilst my office is in Adelaide, I do have the benefit of getting out and about to visit Courts and vehicle depots, I really enjoy my site visits, it’s very rewarding to see my team doing a great job and providing an excellent service. As a manager I feel very passionate about ensuring that I am visible to my team, whilst there will always be a need to spend time in the office I believe that it is vital to get out and about and speak to the team on a regular basis, being approachable and being willing to listen is the key to building a good working environment. I want my people to feel engaged, empowered and valued, whilst we may not always agree on issues I want them to feel that they are listened to and that their contribution is valued.

I hold various weekly and monthly meetings with the team where we discuss operational, welfare and training issues. Compliance is another key part of our business and we are continually looking at how we can improve our processes and procedures, not only to enhance the level of service that we provide but also to ensure that we are creating a secure and safe working environment for everyone.

I joined the company as an Escort Officer in the UK in 1993, when the first prisoner escort contract was awarded, it’s great to look back and remember being there on the first day and to see how much we have grown as business since then. I was promoted to a managerial position within a couple of years of joining the company and found myself mobilising two further contacts that we were awarded. I have always loved a challenge and so over the years I have taken every available opportunity to work in a number of different operations and roles to gain as much knowledge and experience as I could.

The business is committed to providing development opportunities for people who want to progress, I have attended various management development courses over the years and have found them to be a great tool to help me further develop in my role. I didn’t have any previous management experience prior to joining the company, whilst I realised at the time that I was joining a large organisation I never envisaged that one day I would end up in Australia!

Whilst I might be the other side of the world and managing a different contract, some things never change – our core values are the calibre of our employees, I am again very fortunate to be leading such a great team of people.

What will I be doing?

  • Ensuring that all operational procedures are adhered to and targets met
  • Ensuring a healthy and safe work environment
  • Ensuring financial targets are met
  • Managing and motivating the team, conducting training and developmental reviews
  • Managing absence and conduct issues within company procedures
  • Building and maintaining relationships with internal and external customers
  • Promoting continuous improvement through team and individual involvement
  • Upholding and promoting the company values at all times

Colette Ellis-Paterson

General Manager

South Australia Prisoner Transport and In Court Management