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My Experience Shadowing a HR Practitioner – Laura Featherstone

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My Experience Shadowing a HR Practitioner – Laura Featherstone

HRINZ Student Ambassador for Victoria University, Laura Featherstone, recently took part in a Wellington Branch initiative where she shadowed a HR practitioner for a day to find out what working in HR is really like.

HRINZ offers fantastic opportunities for students who have a passion for and want to pursue a career in Human Resources. One exciting program the Wellington Branch of HRINZ offers is the opportunity to ‘Shadow’ an HR Practitioner for a Day. I had the privilege to join three other HR students to Shadow HR Practitioners at HR Shop in Wellington for the day where we were taken to client offices and learnt what working in HR was really like.

HR Shop offers outsourced HR services to clients who aim to build high performing teams to achieve business success. Their comprehensive packages offer ongoing support with tailored solutions for their clients that are organized around the different stages of business growth.

To begin our day we were introduced to the Managing Director, Samantha Gadd and a Client Partner, Richard Westney. We learnt about the HR Shop story, growth and their clients. Samantha and Richard also told us all about their employment history and how they achieved the positions they have now. It was interesting to hear their success stories and learn about their work in HR. This told us how to put our learning into practice and the different ways of achieving our HR goals.

Then, we spoke to the Advisors and Consultants and discussed the type of work typically done at HR Shop and in corporate roles. This was followed by a visit to client offices where we got to see the Advisors and Consultants in action. Here, we got to learn what the position of an HR practitioner is really like. For me, this was the most beneficial part of the day because this is something we are unable to learn in the lecture theatres. While at the client offices we listened in on some phone calls and learnt how consultants and advisors work with clients and applied our textbook learnt concepts to real-life situations.

To finish off the day we discussed HR issues that had been dealt with by some of the team and came up with suggested solutions to each problem. This was especially interesting because we discussed real issues that are prevalent in many HR workplaces. While coming up with solutions it was interesting to hear the different perspectives and implications when implementing the ideas.

This day cemented to me how important HR is to a business. I learnt how HR policies and practices can have positive impacts on businesses and how HR practitioners can be at the forefront of these positive changes. Now, I am even more enthusiastic to enter the HR workforce and am looking forward to the exciting opportunities ahead with HR.

I would like to thank the team at HR Shop and HRINZ for setting up this educational and exciting program. This is not something HR students get to do everyday so I would strongly suggest to all students to put themselves out there to learn more about working in HR.