Avanade’s HR Director Talks Interns

Last week we celebrated the 1st birthday of our HR Intern Program with a morning tea event. The success of the program has been dependent on the support of our client partners including Bayer, Rabobank and Foxtel to name a few and we are delighted to see how many interns have been offered permanent roles through the program already.  One success story comes from Kate Naughton, HR Director at Avanade whose intern has progressed to a full-time role as an HR Analyst.

Read about Kate’s experiences below:

Q.What type of business is Avanade?

A. Avanade provides enterprise business technology solutions and managed services that connect insight, innovation and expertise in Microsoft technologies to help customers realise results. We employ over 21,000 professionals globally.

Q. What is the structure of your HR Team at Avanade, Australia?

A. Our team consisted of 3 HR generalists and 2 recruiters before we participated in the Intern Program and were introduced to Jiale Zhang.

Q. On what basis was Jiale employed?

A. Jiale initially joined us on a 3 month intern contract; working one day per week while he was completing his final year at UNSW studying Psychology & Human Resources.

Q. How did Jiale’s internship progress?

A. Jiale actually joined the HR team as an intern a year ago exactly. After the initial 3 month contract finished we were impressed so extended the contract for 3 months, and then another 6 months. Jiale has gradually worked his way up from one day per week, to three days per week and since graduating has become full-time.

Q. Employers often express concern about the time needed to train up an intern, was it a long process?

A. Not at all, I was surprised how much value Jiale added in such a small space of time. He is enthusiastic, eager to learn and eager to participate in all that we ask of him. He also provides a nice balance to all the females in the team!

Q. What type of tasks has Jiale taken on?

A. Over the last year Jiale has worked across all areas of HR including Operations, L&D, projects, and Recruitment. The program was structured to include a mix of taking responsibility for administration and tasks, shadowing and project work.

As time went on, Jiale began to take ownership of processes such as coordinating overtime, responding to employee queries, drafting employee communications and coordinating our exit process. Jiale has also been involved in raising awareness for The Big Bake for Australian Red Cross to all employees, assisting on visa applications for international employees, running online training seminars for all employees and assisting the HR team to facilitate the annual performance review for all employees.

 In terms of projects, Jiale was instrumental in researching and formulating Avanade’s Corporate Social Responsibility program and is now driving its implementation. He has now also become part of the global Performance Management team which is driving change and enhancements to our process.

Q. Have there been any milestones in his career to date?

A. Definitely!  He’s been awarded 2 spot award (recognition awards) for training and recruitment. He has successfully engaged in end to end recruiting from initial phone screen to closing the role. He has run induction programs for new employees and managed employee catch ups escalating all necessary issues to the appropriate channels.

Jiale quickly identified with the Avanade culture and our core values enabling him to understand the environment we are working in, both from a business and an HR perspective. He has become a valued member of the team.

Q. Do you have any recommendations for would-be employers?

A. Go for it! Avanade was delighted to provide work experience to an HR student, to bring additional capacity into our team and I could not be happier with the results.

The intern programme was a new concept for Avanade and the experience exceeded all of our expectations. We would recommend the programme without hesitation.

We spoke to Jiale to congratulate him on completing his studies and his internship. We asked this rising star for an insight into what he has learnt since graduating “I always thought that HR would be managing people to ensure all employees are satisfied, but I now understand that HR is the backbone of any good organisation.”

He hit the nail on the head……

Peoplecorp have an active pool of high calibre HR students  ready to start work immediately.  Our interns are hand-picked from top-tier universities in Sydney and have already undergone a rigorous interview process representing the crop of the next generation of HR talent.

To register your company’s interest in our Intern Program contact Josh Voon by email josh@peoplecorp.com.au