EAE Business School, and the Professional Careers Service in particular, constantly offers students a range of options to round off their academic development they receive in the classrooms, by joining the employment market where they can put their knowledge into practice. This goal of employability is achieved through events held at both the Madrid and Barcelona Campuses, such as Company Meetings with leading multinationals, EAE Talent Week and the Employment Forum.
It was precisely in the last of these initiatives that Sergi Navarro had the chance to apply for a vacant position at Indra. He worked in the Recruitment Department, performing duties that were very related to his Master in Human Resources Management. He now continues to work in the sector as an HR BP Support technician at Boehringer Ingelheim. “I wanted to keep working in the world of HR and a company that ranks as highly as a Top Employer as Boehringer gave me an exceptional opportunity to keep growing professionally”, he added in this respect.
The student on the Master in Human Resources Management has a clear objective to get a stable job in this area. To do so, he takes advantage of every opportunity offered by the School. “Unless you have many years’ experience in a sector, companies are not going to come looking for you. You have got to take action and never underestimate the professional opportunity that internships can give you”, he now advises future students at the School.
You now work at Boehringer Ingelheim. What is your position and what are your everyday duties?
I am currently in charge of all the Talent Acquisition of the company’s trainees. My duties are those involved in HR BP Support.
As such, I am responsible for looking for any interns that any department in the company may request, overseeing the whole process from the moment that the manager requests a trainee for the department right though to the end of the intern’s placement at the company.
This means that my duties are varied, with everything from drafting Work Plans with our in-house IT tools, contact with universities, responding to the interns’ enquiries, the recruitment process, onboarding and getting the intern settled at the company, etc. It certainly gives me a comprehensive overview of the company and pharmaceutical sector that I didn’t have before.
How did you get the opportunity to join this company?
When I saw the vacancy and the work plan offered by Boehringer, I didn’t hesitate to apply for a moment. Then it was just a case of going through the selection process.
Why were you so interested in the vacancy and what Boehringer Ingelheim could offer you?
First and foremost, it gave me value. My intention is, and was, to keep working in the world of HR and, certainly, a company that ranks as highly as a Top Employer as Boehringer gave me an exceptional opportunity to keep growing professionally.
What do you hope to learn from this experience?
After nearly six months, I can say that my expectations have more than been fulfilled, as it is a cross-functional department in which I am in direct contact with extremely qualified professionals from the world of HR. Moreover, being in meetings in which important issues are discussed in relation to the involvement and application of HR in the company, without a doubt, gives you a direct insight into the impact that we all have as members of HR departments.
Your role focuses on Talent Acquisition. What actions does the company take in this respect?
The actions that I take charge of include developing a Value Wok Plan with the Directors, looking for suitable recruitment sources for the positions, screening, competence interviews, etc.
You will have heard the claim that millenials are no longer committed to companies and their jobs, or the idea that there is no such thing as a job for life any more. In your opinion, is there really a lack of commitment that companies are unable to tackle? What do you think of this generational change?
I think that there are companies and millenials for all scenarios. Boehringer is a company that has an established set of values that can be seen in its day-to-day work, they take good care of the company’s human capital and they have CSR policies in place. So, it doesn’t have to be like that. If you feel valued, have responsibilities and identify with the company culture, I don’t see why you would need to change job and why you couldn’t develop a career plan.
You previously worked at Indra. What was your position and what were your everyday duties?
I worked in the Recruitment Department and I also had the opportunity to provide support to the Director of Labour Relations.
My tasks included needs detection in relation to recruitment, defining profiles with Project Managers, posting employment offers on our various recruitment sources, filtering candidates, conducting psychometric tests, telephone and in-person interviews, group exercises, providing support to the Director of Centre Management with respect to Labour Relations.
What did you learn from your experience at Indra?
A great deal! I will always grateful to everybody there for all that I learned. They helped me to improve and acquire competences that I didn’t have before in the professional sphere. I always got constructive advice and feedback from my tutor, who certainly gave me a greater understanding of HR, recruitment and ways of striking a balance between the quality and efficiency of work. I am really grateful to all my former colleagues in the department.
What aspects of the company and its working atmosphere would you highlight?
Extremely good. We had a heavy workload, but that didn’t stop us from having a great working atmosphere, with us all helping each other in whatever way we could. It was an incredible experience.
Looking to the future, what are your professional objectives in the short and long term?
Having a stable job within HR, but what I value above all is that it is a job that generates value and which enables me to keep acquiring knowledge. In my opinion, in the modern world, we are ‘forced’ to continue learning throughout our professional lives.
With respect to the Employment Forum, were you looking for work at that company and started a chat with them to introduce yourself, or did you simply apply at their stand?
I applied directly.
How did you prepare for the Forum? Did you customize your CV for each company? Did you filter the options and start with the companies that you were most interested in, etc.
In my opinion, you don’t have to customize your CV for a particular company. Employment relations are based on a match between the candidate’s natural approach and the company.
Looking back, how did you rate the Employment Forum at the time? Did you imagine that you would end up getting that position thanks to the Forum?
Absolutely. If it weren’t for the opportunities that the Forum offered me, I would have had to rethink the future employment plan I had in mind. Both the Forum and the possibility for EAE to make an agreement is enabling me to move towards my objective.
What advice would you give to EAE students to make the most of the Employment Forum?
Don’t approach the Forum in passive mode. You have to participate and be proactive. Unless you have many years’ experience in a sector, companies are not going to come looking for you. You have got to take action and never underestimate the professional opportunity that internships can give you.
What factors or features of the program made you decide to take the Master in Human Resources Management at EAE Business School?
The fact that it was a program that covered all the different areas of HR, lecturers with extensive experience and quality material made me decide to take the Master.
In your opinion, has the Master helped you, not just in terms of theoretical knowledge, but also practically to approach the market in this sector?
Partly yes, but what I liked most about the Program is the overall vision that it gives you, helping you to understand the different HR processes in the professional world.
Other than the academic side of things, what other aspects would you highlight from your experience in the EAE classrooms?
The group projects. I think that you can always extrapolate this on the employment market and you need to understand how it works in order to operate in the best way.
Lastly, would you recommend EAE? Why?
Yes, I would recommend it for the knowledge that you acquire on the Masters, the great materials, the lecturers who give you feedback, and the blend of theoretical and practical work on the courses. I would also like to mention the staff in the Professional Careers service, who are very efficient and keen to resolve problems. They help you any way they can. I also rate their Employment Forum and Exchange programs which give you access to opportunities on the employment market.