Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Hands-On Experience - Harsh Patel

Here I am in the last week of my internship and I can’t help but wonder-where did the last two months go? I started my internship with the recruiting division and will end with recruiting. I truly can’t believe that my time at SPD is pretty much over. I've learned so much and gained tons of experience, thanks to my motivating colleagues in the recruiting division. Though sometimes the workload and new projects could be challenging, I can now go forward with the confidence that I've faced those challenges and beat them. My spring with SPD was definitely unforgettable and filled with incredible experiences that I never would have been able to get elsewhere.

Now, I’ll talk about my projects and hands-on-experience with the recruiting team during my first few weeks of my internship that were carefully planned and structured. My first day was an extra-ordinary day of meet and greets with division directors including the Chief of Staff, Deputy Director of Field Operations, Talent Acquisition  Employee Relations, Employee Engagement, HR Data, HRMS and many more. It was so inspiring to hear from them and their experience at SPD.

On my second day, I set up my email and email signature - getting a “.gov” email domain felt so proud and encouraging.  Furthermore, I learned about the SPD structure, entire recruitment life-cycle, and some general policies. From third day, I was ready for hands-on-training on various HR tasks and daily duties that continued for two consecutive weeks. It started with creating job openings and screening questions in PeopleSoft, learning about civil service reform and how it relates to hiring practices, screening and routing qualified candidates, conducting background checks, E-verify, and finally, preparing candidates for hire. It was extensive training and my first experience with PeopleSoft so, sometimes I felt overwhelmed but gradually picked up and learned a lot. Again, thanks to the helping attitude of the recruiting team that made it possible.

Furthermore, I also received training for managing interview schedules and interview evaluation for candidates. During this time, I had one of my most memorable, favorite, and surprising experience when I got chance to interview a candidate with Director of Talent Acquisition that was not on my schedule. Astonishingly, I was not as nervous being an interviewer as compared to being an interviewee. I learned how to professionally communicate with candidates during interviews, ask questions, and take necessary notes. It was a nice experience sitting on the other side of table.

During my last few weeks with recruiting, I worked on various projects and there were some cool (many) things that I learned like sourcing candidates on various job boards, writing blogs, creating a video for recruiting and E-newsletter for hiring managers, researching ways to create a recruitment/ HR toolkit, and providing assistance for buying job-fair banners by getting quotes from agency’s approved suppliers.

Overall, my experience with recruiting team and SPD as an intern has been truly rewarding. I feel very fortunate to be working for an organization that is going through an exciting time of growth and development. SPD is truly an efficient government agency with dedicated employees.

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