Looking back at my secondment to ITS UK

Harry Mandel
Apprentice, Levett Business Services

From September to December 2023, Harry Mandel, Apprentice at member Levett Business Services, joined ITS UK to support their membership activities. As the secondment comes to an end, Harry and Chief Executive Max Sugarman share what they took away from the experience.

What I’ve learnt from my time at ITS UK – Harry Mandel

During my time at ITS UK, I was given some incredible opportunities and got to meet some amazing people within the field.

Before I started my secondment in September, I didn’t know what to expect. I was very new to the transport sector and had only met Max once at an industry event. However, when I was offered the opportunity to support ITS UK and its membership activites, I was very happy to help.

I have really enjoyed working with the team, including on the the release of a new members portal and new internal member relations system. There were many challenges with the implementation of the new system, the biggest one being that all the data had to be correctly implemented, requiring it all to be uniform and all the anomalies fixed. This may have taken a while, but it was incredibly rewarding to see the system come online and to see members benefiting from it – so I know that it was vital work which will allow the organisation to run more effectively and reach its potential.

A personal highlight of mine has been the Executive Dinners that ITS UK host for their top tier membership. This is where I have been able to have conversations with real decision makers in the sector, including with people like Transport for London Commissioner Andy Lord and Shadow Roads Minister Bill Esterson MP. These dinners are one of the most important services that ITS UK offer to their Executive Members, by giving them exclusive access to key individuals within the industry and providing a space to spark some truly insightful conversation. Being part of them has been a great opportunity.

Overall, I have found the experience massively eye-opening, in terms of showing me the opportunities within the ITS Sector and what the future of transport holds. I wish ITS UK and the team the best going forward, and I can’t wait for our paths to cross again in the future.

What it was like having Harry join us – Max Sugarman

Harry joined ITS UK in September 2023 to help support the organisation with our membership administration activities for a number of months. It’s been a busy time at ITS UK, so there was no shortage of things to do, but Harry was up for the challenge, and it wasn’t long before he was meeting members, attending events and generally helping us support the transport technology industry.

We had a busy three months from September to December. Not only did we have our President’s Dinner and Awards, but we had two Executive Dinners with senior industry leaders, a SME & Start Up Conference, a packed Forum programme, an Exports Study report to launch and trade shows like Highways UK to prepare for. Harry quickly got stuck in; manning stands, issuing member news stories, helping members sign up and renew – even handing out awards trophies on stage in front of 200 people!

It has been great seeing Harry thrive in the role. One of the great things about industry associations is how varied and ever-changing the work is – no day is like another – so it was a brilliant opportunity for Harry to get hands-on experience, see how the industry works, and also understand all the ways we support the sector. And, given how much we talk about getting young people into ITS, we were really pleased to play our small part in supporting Harry to expand his understanding and knowledge of transport technology.

Thank you to Harry for his support over the past few months – we wish him all the best with his apprenticeship and know he has a bright future ahead!

Photo: Harry (right) with ITS UK President Steve Norris (left)