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Sam Paley - Online Services Administrator


Sam Paley, 25, joined Chamber International as an administrative assistant in August 2016 after enquiring about a career in international trade.  He was promoted to Online Services Administrator in March 2017.

Can you briefly describe your role?

I am part of a busy team that is the first point of contact for exporters throughout the UK wishing to register for edge, our online export platform. I also support businesses when they are using edge, whether they are in their UK office or overseas. One of edge’s functions is to enable users to create their own export documents and new functionality is being added all the time. I work with the technical development team to help test any changes to the system. I often work under pressure. I may be dealing with exporting food ingredients to the Far East one minute and steel girders to South America the next but it is always interesting.

What attracted you to the industry?

My father and sister work in freight forwarding and I wanted to do something connected to exporting. Chamber International was recommended to me. It seemed a bonus to able to fulfill my ambition with an organisation that is part of the British Chambers of Commerce network.

What do you enjoy most about working in this industry?

There is a huge amount of variety in my work, largely provided through the wide range of businesses we help. Many factors are constantly evolving international trade, most recently the development of the Internet and e-commerce, which are opening up exporting to very small enterprises. The work is satisfying because many Chamber International clients are relatively new to exporting. We help them on a grassroots, functional level and make a real difference to what they achieve.

What skills does your work require?

You need efficient time management, to work well under pressure and to have the personal skills to get on well with clients, who you may know only from telephone conversations, and colleagues. You also need to be a ‘self-starter’ although there is a very friendly atmosphere and help and advice is always available.

What internal support have you had since joining Chamber International

Soon after joining, I was sent of a Method of Payment & Letter of Credit course at Bradford Business Park and, in November, the British Chambers of Commerce  (BCC) EUR1/ATR training course in Coventry. This was followed by attending Chamber International’s Export Documentation & Import Procedure course in Leeds and a BCC Certification Assessment Course in Birmingham. As a result, I became a British Chamber of Commerce accredited authorised signatory for certifying documents used for customs clearance in international trade. More recently I was promoted, with a pay rise, to online services manager. I never thought that I would be able to learn so much in so short a time! Chamber International is also sponsoring me as a student of the Institute of Export to help me achieve a Diploma in international trade.

Are your colleagues helpful?

Yes. Everyone here is very friendly and very helpful which has made my first six months really enjoyable on a personal, as well as a professional, level.