Career Pathways Careers

Career Pathways

If you’re ambitious and looking for a diverse and exciting career that can take you from Heathrow to Hong Kong, or from Liverpool to LA then Freight Forwarding could be just the ticket.
Case Studies
Jack Reddington

The best parts are getting to see the different types of projects we have on. Seeing the sports cars coming in, getting to see four-metre-high cargo being loaded, how it happens – real hands on.


Jack Reddington, Projects Logistics Solutions

Pathway, Apprenticeship

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Katie-Louise Thompson-Friend

My proudest achievement so far would be standing in front of a room of new colleagues, CEO, MD, top dogs of our USA offices presenting to them why they should work for Woodland, what opportunities there are and what this new warehouse could bring.


Katie-Louise Thompson-Friend, Fulfilment Customer Service - Account Manager

Pathway, Apprenticeship

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Laura Hobby

I started working in shipping in 2015 when I was 18, through a recommendation from a friend for an admin job for APL Shipping line based in Stratford. I had a brief understanding of shipping and logistics as my dad was a Transport Manager for 20 years with CEVA Logistics and several of my family members including brother, uncle and grandad were all lorry drivers. I completed 2 years at a shipping line, achieving two promotions during this time before moving to freight forwarding.

Laura Hobby, Inside Sales Supervisor

Pathway, Sales

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Lexi Laybourn

My proudest achievement is starting the Virtual Tours of DP World London Gateway. I had hosted tours in person before the pandemic which went well, and I wanted to think of a way to still show off the amazing port development whilst also working through covid. I never expected it to take off the way it has, but the tour has now been shown to hundreds of people from all over the world! To see people from different countries logged onto my tour was a slight ‘pinch me’ moment.

Lexi Laybourn, Customer Service Officer

Pathway, Apprenticeship

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Ryan Wilkes

I coordinate and project manage the tender process from dealing with overseas offices to preparing pricing for different modes of transport to supporting our overall customer response for hopefully a long-term contract. Day-to-day, this could include, working with UK and overseas colleagues completing pricing requests and supporting senior managers with other projects.

Ryan Wilkes, Tender Specialist

Pathway, Apprenticeship

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Ella Moles

Be prepared, be organised, and keep on top of the workload and help build the reflective learning log. I made notes and kept on top of my GEODIS work, so that I had time for my apprenticeship work. Pick an apprenticeship in a subject that you genuinely enjoy, as you will be doing it for a while. If you are unsure of the role, research the industry and get the information to see if you will enjoy the apprenticeship. That’s how I discovered freight forwarding.

Ella Moles, Forwarder

Pathway, Apprenticeship

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Kyle Lawrence

My proudest achievement is being nominated as a finalist for, “Apprentice of the Year”, this was a great achievement and although I was runner up it was a great experience, I was also able to bring my mum along and she was very proud of me, we also met Dame Kelly Holmes and had a nice picture taken of the three of us.

Kyle Lawrence, Seafreight Customer Care Operator

Pathway, Seafreight

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Thomas Frost

I would say to anyone getting into the industry to just go for it. Dive right in! Question why things are done and always give your own opinion. That way you get to know the job quicker and you get to know why you are doing it. I would also suggest trying to network and get to know people in the same position to you in the industry. The BIFA Young Freight Network (YFN) is a great place to start.

Thomas Frost, Gateway Coordinator

Pathway, Apprenticeship

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Paul Szyszkowski

Career-wise, my best achievement to date has been taking a step up from shipping management to an Import Operations Supervisor at 25. This involved recruiting and building my team up. I’m the one they look up to, to make important and financial decisions. I really enjoy the challenge.

Paul Szyszkowski, Import Operations Supervisor

Pathway, Multimodal

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Vivi Mougkra

After seven months in my new job, I was awarded Employee of the Month. This was recognition of a change I suggested which resulted in increased profit margin and growth in business.


Vivi Mougkra, Senior Customs Process Administrator

Pathway, Customs

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Adam Williams

One day you can be sending props to the latest blockbuster on site in Hungary, the next sending lifesaving pharmaceuticals to the UAE. If you apply yourself and are willing to work hard, this industry can offer an environment that you can really excel in and progress.

Adam Williams, Commercial Director

Pathway, Sales / Account Management

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Sara Collett

During my apprenticeship, I moved around departments undertaking 3-4-month placements in each role to gain a good understanding of different aspects of the supply chain. I’m currently based in Istanbul working for Davies Turner and our partner Freight Forwarder - Ekol Logistics. Taking the role to be a Support Delegate in Turkey seemed a natural next step in my career journey.

Sara Collett: Overseas Support Delegate 

Pathway: European Road Freight / Overseas Opportunity

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Andy Blundell

My very first role in events was working on the Commonwealth Games in India, which provided a baptism of fire into the industry! We essentially “go where the event is” and need to adapt our logistical planning and delivery according to the local environment.

Andy Blundell: General Manager – Expo, Events and Hospitality

Pathway: Events

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Ian Mallon

In the morning you can be having a Skype conversation with China, and then in the late afternoon checking in with Los Angeles as you think about getting ready for home! To be successful in this industry it is imperative to know the job from the ground up, so working in a variety of roles and departments gave me a great foundation to build on.

Ian Mallon: Managing Director

Pathway: Business Owner

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Jayne Waite

As Customer Service has always been my passion I was thrilled to be involved in creating a role that was eventually implemented as a national programme. Although I have only worked for two organisations I have been fortunate enough to have held a variety of different roles, and had many fantastic opportunities to develop personally and professionally.

Jayne Waite: National Client Account Manager

Pathway: Customer Service

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Are you looking for an apprenticeship?

One of the big attractions of choosing a career in Freight Forwarding is the different pathways that your career could take you. Here you can read a range of case studies from established BIFA Members supporting this. You can also see top tips from existing apprentices as to why you should consider it.

Industry Insights from apprentices

My apprenticeship has given me a solid understanding of the world of shipping and I really feel like I will work in this industry for life. I have gained a wide range of experience which will continue to grow throughout my career.


Working in this industry is very challenging and exciting, the thrill of winning your first account and doing your first shipment is a great feeling. I would encourage anyone to work in this industry, it’s completely different to your standard admin job.


Industry Insights from employers

DB Schenker is a strong advocate for the International Freight Forwarding apprenticeship and we see this as an ideal entry point into the logistics industry. We have enjoyed tremendous success with previous apprenticeship programmes, with students graduating to multiple diverse roles throughout our company.

Ray Hennessy, CEO, DB Schenker