Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Meet Our Intern - Josh Fox

     Hello everyone! My name is Josh Fox, and I am currently an intern with the Indiana State Personnel Department. I completed my undergraduate courses at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana prior to moving to Indianapolis to work for the State of Indiana before graduating in May. My goals for this blog are to inform and aid students during their internship and career search, so that my peers may benefit from some of my past experiences, and to introduce everyone to the benefits and satisfaction of working for the State of Indiana!

     Let me begin by telling you how honored I feel to be a part of SPD’s inaugural spring internship program. While Indiana has previously offered the Governor’s Public Service Internship Program during the summer months, this spring the Indiana State Personnel Department unveiled a new program that allows students to be introduced to public service and gain real-life work experience during the regular school year. This program isn’t designed to simply occupy the intern’s time or fetch doughnuts. I feel challenged everyday I come to work and I feel like my work contributes to the overall goals of the organization. I sincerely believe that the training I have been given, the skills that I have fostered, and the situations that I have been placed in have prepared me for full-time employment in my chosen career path.  Additionally, the quality of the character of the individuals that work for the State Personnel Department is outstanding. I believe that the integrity of the employees and their dedication towards public service makes SPD a truly remarkable place to work.
Next, I want to discuss several basic strategies for students who are searching for employment.
  1. Utilize your university’s career services department.
  • College is expensive.  Get your money’s worth. Almost every school has a department or program dedicated to assisting students in finding employment for little or no cost. Services that you will typically find include: an online job bank, resume and cover letter writing assistance, job fairs, and employer information panels.  SPD routinely coordinates with universities across the state to find qualified applicants for a wide variety of positions. Working with career services helped me attain my current internship with the State Personnel Department by critiquing my resume, and helping me search for opportunities!
    • Do not hesitate to use these services. That is what they are they for, and they are happy to help. I have spoken with far too many students who were simply too intimidated to work with career services or contact employers.
    • Larger universities may have more than one career service department, or individual school based programs. Many will allow you to sign up to view posted jobs even if you are not a student within that particular program. I learned about my current internship through KelleyCareers, even though I was not a Kelley student.
   2. Familiarize yourself with online resources.

  • Your online profile is becoming increasingly important in the search for jobs, as more and more processes are taking place over the Internet. Websites like LinkedIn allow you to post a professional, personal profile that employers can view. Employers can post job openings and review candidates very quickly and efficiently.  SPD has a LinkedIn group, a Facebook page, a Twitter Account, and Google + in order to connect with, and communicate job openings to as many people as possible!  For internships and entry-level opportunities in Indiana, try Indianaintern.net and internmatch.com.

3. Be proactive and put forth your full effort.

  • Most likely, a job or internship isn't just going to fall into your lap. Make the extra effort and prepare a thorough, professional resume and cover letter.  If you feel your experience on your resume isn't up to par, a sincere cover letter could convey the skills or qualities the hiring manager wants.  While applying for my current internship, I expressed my eagerness to learn and genuine interest in human resources. Also, nothing may be more off-putting to an employer than a resume or application that hasn't been proof read or fully completed. If you do not put forth your full effort on your resume, the employer will logically think you will not put forth your full effort on the job.

     If anyone has any questions, or topics that you would like to discuss, please feel free to comment or email me at josfox@spd.in.gov!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Meet Our Intern - Harsh Patel

Before I started college I knew that I wanted to complete an internship before graduation. After multiple interviews, I was selected by the IN State Personnel Department (SPD) for their Spring Internship position. I knew that it would be an amazing experience because SPD helps the governor's office and state agencies to effectively achieve their stated goals and objectives by delivering integrated Human Resource services. The people working at SPD make it possible by establishing and nurturing an organizational culture rooted in values and core competencies like teamwork, integrity, and innovation.
Every day when I walk to SPD at the Government building located in downtown Indianapolis, I see the energy among state employees- to serve their state and make their agency as efficient as possible. SPD is situated right next to the State Capitol building and walking here in the beautiful Government Center building makes me feel energetic, special, and empowered. It’s a great downtown location. And did I tell you why I chose SPD? Because it has achieved tremendous efficiency by centralizing and innovating itself; it has embraced changes according to time and needs that you might not even find in private sector. In 2011, Indiana State employed the fewest employees per capita when compared to any other state in US. This a big change with approximately 30,000 employees SPD manages, and every day, I learn here how they made it possible, and still trying to make it even more efficient. My internship is unpaid but my experience here is invaluable. There are many motivating colleagues who are always here to help me learn and make the most of my experience. They take time out of their busy schedule and give me hands-on-training with HR tasks. These are the most important lessons I’m learning in my HR career. Right on my first day of orientation, I got the chance to meet various department directors that handle many things from hiring to employee relations. Where else would you find such an opportunity to network and learn from leaders who have years of experience? These relationships developed during my internship will always help me succeed in the future.
In my opinion, this real world experience that I am gaining through my internship with SPD certainly increases my chances of obtaining employment after graduating. Throughout my internship I will gain HR skills and training, vast networking opportunities, and the ability to list my experience and my accomplishments on my resume. Every day I am learning new things as my internship is well planned to expose me to different departments/ functions of HR. It will help me identify my true passion and interest within HR, which will certainly help me launch my career in the right direction. So far my internship is great and I’m excited every single day to come to work to learn new things.
Thank you!

Contributed by: Harsh Patel, HR Intern