The last time I wrote, I was organising my business trip to Oxford. Once I travelled to the Oxford Science Park, I was greeted my Charlotte who welcomed me and gave me an insightful tour of the Sherard Building, Amey Head Office. I was informed about my agenda beforehand and what my day would entail.
The top agenda on my list was my first meeting with Valerie. When I first met Valerie we talked about Amey and what Valerie’s job is as a group HR Director. For example overseeing and writing up monthly Group HR reports. This report contains information about Amey’s HR strategic objectives progress on different sections such as the Amey Academy, performance management, resourcing and recruitment etc. As I mentioned previously, I lacked in business and commercial awareness. I asked Valerie for her advice to overcome this and on interview preparations. Valerie made many useful suggestions which consisted of looking at a company’s annual reports to gain better understanding of revenues, margins and profits to gain an understanding into the businesses organisation.
My second agenda was to meet Emma Quegan who gave me a tour of Winchester House (Amey’s HR building), to learn how the different sectors within the HR department (service centre) operate. I had the opportunity to talk to the learning and development team, to learn how they were in charge of training graduates and apprentices. I also talked to the bidding, pension and mobilisation team, communication team and on-boarding team who were in charge of security checks and references of new employees.
Over lunch I had the opportunity to discuss with Emma and colleagues about their careers and completing the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development). Additionally we discussed my plans and what I wanted to do after I graduated. After lunch, I had the opportunity to sit with Emma and the frontline team to observe how enquiries are dealt with. The frontline team get a variety of enquiries ranging from general to specific areas, and it is their job to delegate appropriate enquiries to the right teams. One enquiry consisted of notifying an employee about whether he was still entitled to his company car budget.
As a third year student, I am currently applying for internships and graduate schemes. My final agenda was to gain advice on writing an ideal application or CV. I had the opportunity to meet Marissa Watts, who suggested improvements to tailor my CV around a specific role that I am applying for. Additionally Jenny Hinde provided me with useful tips on successful interviews.
To sum it up, my trip to Oxford was fantastic. The people that I met today gave me a thoughtful insight in working in this industry which solidifies my desire to pursue a career in HR. I anticipate my next meeting to visit Oxford again in March.