Meet Kevin Longland, Commercial & Operations Supervisor
4 January 2021
Kevin joined TJ in 2014 as a driver. He was soon offered a job in the transport office and went on to become an integral part of setting up TJ’s Bristol operation, which he now heads up. Since moving to Bristol Kevin and his family have enjoyed exploring the local area and he’s also a bit of a foodie; lockdown inspired him to take on the role of chef in the absence of meals out and he’s now a pro at making his own sausages, burgers and kebabs – yum!
What does your role involve?
Everything! Predominantly I look after the Bristol fleet as well as all the night work for the whole company. TJ Transport’s Bristol base comprises a fleet of 11 tipper lorries and 1 grab lorry, which are deployed around Bristol and the surrounding areas. We work for various clients, carrying out haulage work and delivering aggregate supplies. We source a lot of aggregates ourselves as it is a great area for that with plenty of quarries locally.
When it comes to managing the night work, we carry out a lot of remedial work, which allows clients to get on with other work during the day. We’ve done a lot of night work on the M4, M5 and M27 Smart Motorway improvement works, delivering asphalt and other aggregates there. TJ travels far and wide at night – you’ll find our lorries anywhere from Gloucester to Brighton during the nighttime hours; I plan and manage those movements on a day-today basis to ensure all jobs get completed on schedule.
What’s your career background?
When I left school I spent a few years working on market stalls and trying to decide what I wanted to do career-wise. I got a job in a parcel depot in Portsmouth as a driver, which was good as I was always out and about. When I was offered a job in the office, I initially turned it down, but when winter set in, I reconsidered! Within six months I was running the place, responsible for 2,000 parcels a day and managing the logistics of them all.
What are the most rewarding parts of your role?
I love that feeling you get when everything turns out well at the end of the day, when all jobs are completed on time and the customers are happy with the service they’ve received. Quite often, things will come up to complicate a job or the day’s (or night’s) schedule, but I will be on it, working to ensure that any challenges are overcome and any issues resolved. I often joke that I’m a logistical genius!
What are the most challenging elements?
The same thing really – ensuring that every day goes smoothly and that the staff are happy. I make sure that the drivers get jobs they are happy with and ones that will suit their preferences and strengths – this ensures that all jobs get done well and that the staff are satisfied – it’s win-win!
What’s your proudest work achievement?
I joined TJ in 2014 as a driver with a view to progressing and I soon offered a job in the transport office. When expanding TJ’s lorry fleet to the Bristol area came up as a possible venture for the company, I expressed an interest. I ended up helping to set up the new operation and when I was asked to relocate to run it, we pulled together as a family and made the move. We’ve been here 4 and a half years and really enjoy it. When I started at Bristol, I got it all up and running and made it my mission to grow the night work. We started with 2 clients and now have 15 so I’m pretty proud of that!
Why is TJ a great place to work?
TJ is a forward-thinking company with ambition, which is great. They want to keep moving, but they also want to take their staff with them, which encourages staff loyalty. The management team is really helpful and always keen to train staff who show an interest and help them to progress their careers. They’re constantly evolving and constantly caring, it’s a good combination!
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