Name: Laura Bolter
Job title: HR manager
Company: North Downs Dairy Company
Sales: £82m
HQ: Wincanton, Somerset
Employees: 210

What's it like to work for your company and why is it a good employer? The company has a very attractive ethos, whereby individual initiative is encouraged and supported. We welcome people challenging what we do and the way we work and we firmly believe supporting the individual's needs is crucial for success.

What's the best thing about working there? Although we are owned by the Irish Dairy Board, my team has the autonomy to make changes to how HR is perceived and delivered. We are also able to get new ideas implemented quickly.

If the company were a car what would it be and why? I drive a Freelander, of which I am very proud. I would liken the company to my car because she can react quickly, she's very reliable and, if it's appropriate, she doesn't have to stick to the predicted road.

What's the training like and what qualifications can I earn? At present, our training schemes do not result in externally recognised qualifications. However I am keen to focus on this in the future. It is very important to motivate staff with training courses to enable them to strengthen or gain new skills. We see great results from the internal training schemes that we currently offer.

What's been your proudest achievement of the past 12 months? We have made various changes to the HR service that are already proving successful. Gaining the trust and confidence of managers to allow us to implement these changes has been very important.

What is the most important HR issue? I will soon be working as part of the senior management team to roll out the newly revised Performance Management process across the business. This will give the company more focus as everyone's objectives will feed into the overall goals.

Are you looking for any people right now and, if so, where? We have a very low staff turnover and feel there is a great deal of loyalty within the company. Having said that, we are always looking for new ways to develop and are always keen to hear from talented prospective employees. Email:

What tips would you offer jobseekers? It is a very difficult time for jobseekers and standing out from the crowd is crucial. It is important that people concentrate on identifying the transferable skills they can offer a prospective employer.

How do I find out more about the company? Go to

Are you working on anything exciting right now? We've just launched a range of waxed truckles for Christmas. And we want to build on the successful growth achieved in 2009 (sales up 10% to £75m). Next year looks set to be even more exciting for Pilgrims Choice, with new advertising, packaging and innovative product launches.