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Jess Tray, a senior consultant based at the UK headquarters of digital and business transformation consultancy Gate One, has been named Young Project Professional of the Year at this year’s APM Awards.

Jess has been recognised for her work supporting Good Thinking (an NHS-approved digital service) to provide specific and relatable information to Londoners whose wellbeing is most likely to be affected due to the impact of inequalities.

The project came about in response to Public Health England highlighting the disproportionate impact of the pandemic on Londoners from minority ethnic communities and those experiencing inequalities. To address this, Good Thinking sought to produce specific, relatable and culturally competent content, to help those communities access support.

By March 2021, Jess had engaged over 30 organisations and produced over 40 pieces of content, significantly exceeding the brief and delivering to time and budget.

The project included the launch of a range of online content available in different languages, supporting videos, animation and artwork, with endorsement from the Muslim Council of Britain, British Islamic Medical Association, and British Board of Scholars and Imams. To help reduce costs, Jess also edited all the videos and upskilled herself to create the animations for the project.  

The pilot launch of the Five Ways to Wellbeing and Islam increased social media engagement by 1,041 per cent, with over 30,000 impressions in the first five days and a 127 per cent increase in website traffic compared to the previous week. One recipient of a Good Thinking WhatsApp message printed 100 copies of the guide to distribute in food parcels during the pandemic.  

Jess Tray APM winner

APM award winner Jess Tray (centre)

On receiving her award, Jess said: “I joined Good Thinking just before the third lockdown in January 2021 and, having been given the opportunity to do something within mental health, I wanted to do it in the right way. The support of a great team made me feel I had the platform to try something different. My advice to other young project professionals would be to give it a try and see where it goes. I am delighted to have won this award.” 

Professor Adam Boddison, chief executive of APM, said: “I would like to congratulate Jess on winning this award, it’s very well deserved. Our awards are all about celebrating the outstanding successes and achievements of the project profession, made even more significant by the unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

APM is the Association for Project Management, a professional membership organisation that sets the standards for the project profession and the only chartered organisation representing the project profession in the world. 

Grace Blundell

Find out more about Gate One’s work in the public sector, delivering impactful projects that drive meaningful change.