Tuesday 25 February 2020

In this week's Meet the Member we speak to Sonal Devani, Risk Management Manager at Leicester City Council and member of the ALARM Midlands Branch Committee.

What is your role and what are your main responsibilities? 

As Leicester City Council's Risk Management Manager, my role involves producing the risk and business continuity policies and strategies and facilitate the implementation of them.  I regularly deliver corporate risk and business continuity training to managers and members of staff. I work with schools to promote risk and business continuity, share best practice and facilitate testing of their business continuity and emergency plans.  I also Chair the Business Continuity Multi-agency Group consisting of external partners such as the fire service, utilities, charities, NHS, police, universities, the local airport and others. I support and coordinate the Council response to incidents. I collate the findings and produce risk and business continuity reports periodically for Corporate Management Team, executives and the Audit and Risk Committee. Since the amalgamation with emergency management, I am developing my skills in this area too. 

How long have you been an ALARM member? 

I have been a member of ALARM since 2010.

How long have you been an ALARM committee member? 

I have been a member of the Midlands Branch since 2017.

What made you want to join the Midlands committee? 

I was encouraged by senior officers at Leicester City Council to take on this role when the opportunity arose. I am happy I did! I was made to feel welcome by the other committee members opening excellent networking opportunities in the risk, business continuity, emergency and insurance sectors.     

What is involved in being a committee member? 

I don’t believe the expectations of the role are overly time consuming and are also very beneficial. It involves meeting up with other committee members from the region to plan events for the coming year, decide and agree with other members the content and agenda of each event, suggest venues, contact speakers, evaluate each session from the feedback provided by the attendees. The tasks are shared between the committee members. The invites are sent out centrally from the ALARM Office. I am really committed to ensure the events offered by ALARM are of the highest quality for attendees.  

What do you get out of being an ALARM committee member?  

It allows you to meet people from different sectors and share learning and best practices. The Committee is a good sounding board too and helps with horizon scanning. I see it benefiting the organisation you work for and good for personal development and satisfaction.  

What would you say to any members considering joining an ALARM committee or focus group? 

It is an enjoyable experience. Don’t feel put off if you do not know too many people in the different sectors of the industry. This is a positive step for anyone wanting to broaden their horizons and sharing good practice. It can really make you better at your job. My advice is grasp the opportunity. 

If you are interested in joining an ALARM focus group or committee, please contact the ALARM Office

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