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Careers In Waste Management In The UK

Careers In Waste Management In The UK

Review Overview


Organized at 3 PM GMT on 16th December, 2015


Claire Poole


Claire Poole, Education & Training Manager,  Chartered Institution Of Wastes Management

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Co-founder, be Waste Wise

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Ranjith Annepu is the interviewer and also conducted the global waste survey to choose topics for the 2015 Global Dialogue on Waste

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Research Analyst, be Waste Wise

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Madhumitha Rajendran performed background research for the interview

Swetha Dandapani summarized the panel discussion and put together a set of interesting quotes.


CLAIRE POOLE, Education and training manager at CIWM (Chartered Institution of Waste Management)

  • My work is involved with CPD (continuous professional development), developing training courses and looking after the content for the training material.
  • A collaborative approach is taken to create training materials with feedback from people, resources and experts in the field of waste management.
  • You have to show knowledge, experience and also need to pass an interview before getting a certification.
  • People also apply internationally for the Chartered Waste Manager status, but not everybody gets it the first time as you need to have experience to apply for it. It’s a great way to show where you are in your career and demonstrate your achievements.
  • The waste industry is vast. There are opportunities such as, waste collections, driving, waste sorting. A lot of manual sorting is still being done, but recently a lot of technology has been introduced for automated sorting as well.
  • Waste management consultancies work with various types of organizations – from a group with one or two members to governments to large corporations.

Research done in 2012 suggested 40% of waste management companies were planning to increase their numbers/staff in the following year.

  • The average age in the U.K. waste management industry is early- to mid-40.
  • The U.K. has four different regulators all doing similar things in similar ways. Not all regulators are graduates. People come in because of different skill sets, but communication is key for a regulator.
  • It’s not an industry where you absolutely have to have a degree.

Get some experience, do some voluntary work if necessary, show that you have the right kind of understanding of waste management. 

  • Get your foot in the door and network and move on from there. It might not be where you want to end up, but it might be a good stepping stone for a waste management career.
  • Get more familiar with the people and the work in the industry. It’s important to get into the right job sites and open positions are also advertised on company’s websites.
  • Waste management is a very interesting industry – people either come and go in a short time or they stay for a really, really long time. Varied changes and legislation makes life very interesting.

People tend to get hooked and they stay  there’s always some challenge. You won’t get bored, absolutely won’t get bored. 

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