Harry M.

HR Business Partner
Happy to mentor
Happy to be contacted

About me

Harry M.
United Kingdom

My employment

HR Business Partner
Imperial Tobacco
United Kingdom
HR, recruitment and training
Large business (250+ employees)

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A day in the life of a HR Business Partner in the United Kingdom

Getting the best out of people in a HR role

What I do

Try to get the best for the business by getting the best out of our people. This is all about trying to enhance the capability of our people by giving them both the tools and the opportunity to succeed - be it anything from training to a relocation to Kyrgyzstan.

Of course I also have to handle the difficult things too - such as union relations, factory closures and restructuring; working in one of the most regulated and rapidly-declining industries in the World.

Skills I use and how I developed them

Stakeholder Management - which is a really fancy way of saying relationships. Without being able to interact with people nothing is possible. On top of that I've had to really work hard at being more commercial, cost-focused and able to have really difficult conversations.

What I like most

My role doesn't have a home location and our company is based in 160 different countries so I get a lot of opportunity to visit some incredible places.

What I like least

Financials. Which are very important but as a former history student numbers still scare me.

What surprised me most

How flexible and creative my job is - I didn't expect to have quite so much freedom and quite so many opportunities.

How I looked for work

Usual way - through TargetJobs or GradJobs etc.

How I found out about the job

Other graduate recruitment website

The recruitment process

Online Application, Telephone Interview, Psychometric Testing (Numerical & Verbal Reasoning), Assessment Centre, Final Interview.

My career goals when I graduated

I honestly had no criteria - I just wanted to do something I would enjoy

My career history

2014-2015 PMO Analyst
2015-2016 Transformation Programme Manager
2016- HR Business Partner

What has helped my career to progress

Relationships. Aside from working hard and delivering - it's the relationships you make at work that are so crucial to unlocking opportunities

Courses taken since graduation

Operations Academy Future Leaders (Planned)
CIPD (Planned)

How my studies have helped my career

A real appreciation of different cultures. Genuinely seems hard to believe studying history at York but it is actually invaluable.

What surprised me about my career so far

How many brilliant life experiences I have had - I've been to so many amazing places.

Where I hope to be in 5 years

Senior HR Manager of a Small Country or Factory Site.

My advice to students considering work

Try and get a real diverse range of experiences - not necessarily work experience but sports, societies etc. Also remember once you get to assessment centre your experience or qualifications are irrelevant- its about your personality and your abilities.

Also know you weaknesses are just development areas - everyone has them regardless of experience and be prepared to talk about them. It's not a bad thing.

My advice about working in my industry

Be open minded. I get a lot of challenges about ethics but this really isn't the case. Also be prepared to travel and if needs be up sticks and move to another country - mobility is such an asset.

Other advice

Don't be clichéd. I reject so many grads at assessment centre who have clearly just read the Student Room and feel the need to drop in group exercise clichés.

Contacting me

Anything you want to ask. I assess current MBA students and grads as part of my remit and have done a fair few interviews from the other side.

Next steps...

If you like the look of Harry’s profile, the next steps are down to you! You can send Harry a message to find out more about their career journey. If you feel you would benefit from more in-depth conversations, ask Harry to be your mentor.

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