Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Aaron's Smelly FSSA Experience

Hello again everyone!  I am completing another rotation of my internship, as I have spent the past three weeks working with Family and Social Services Administration (FSSA).    I got to meet all of the FSSA human resource staff and over my time there have had some memorable experiences.  One day, there was a lot of food brought in to celebrate the birthday of one of the employees, and on another day the office smelled of burnt popcorn all afternoon after someone burnt their afternoon snack.  The burnt popcorn scent was made up for the next day when that employee brought in cookies as an apology for the smell.

During my time here I have been creating organizational charts for each of the different divisions in FSSA.  I also made organizational charts for the different state hospitals.  I had some minimal experience with organizational charts previously from my work in the Department of Natural Resources, but that was just knowing what one of these charts looked like.  For FSSA, I got to make these organizational charts first hand.  On my very first day in FSSA, I went back to SPD’s compensation department to learn just how they make organizational charts by taking information available in PeopleSoft and importing it into Microsoft Visio.  It took a few times for me to get use to the process, but once I got the hang of it, running the PeopleSoft reports and making them into Visio charts seemed pretty easy to me.

I was pretty familiar with most of the features Microsoft Office has to offer, but I was not nearly as familiar with Microsoft Visio.  By working with Visio every day, I could see how useful it really was.  As I continued my work with Visio, I could see my skill with it growing.  Like anything else, it was just one of those things that takes practice, and through my time using it I have had to use the “undo” button a good number of times.

Working with Visio gave me great experience and allowed me to see the kind of organizational structure through each different division in FSSA.  As with each rotation so far, I have learned a lot and truly enjoyed the experience that has been given to me.  I am grateful that the people I have been working with have been so willing to help me whenever I have any questions, and I’m sure that will continue through the remainder of my internship.

I will begin another rotation of my internship next week with the Indiana State Department of Health.  I have recently spoken to the HR staff there about what I will be doing during my two weeks at ISDH and I looking forward to the work they will have me doing and the experience that I will gain through my time working with them.

What Intern Nicole Learned at DOC

My time at the Department of Correction has been very interesting.  I started my first week with the department working on a project to improve their FML tracking process.  This was a particularly interesting project because I was able to call all of the hiring managers from each correctional facility and speak with them about what happens when an employee calls in to use their FML time.  In the middle of working on this project, I learned that there was a vacancy that needed filled at the Pendleton Juvenile Correctional Facility.  They were in need of temporary assistance to fill in as a human resource generalist until they were able to permanently fill the position.  Luckily, I live near Pendleton so I was asked to fill the void while they train their new hire. Needless to say, my time with the Department of Correction has provided me with vast experience in the field of human resources.  I have been doing the work of a human resource generalist for three weeks now and it has been a great learning experience.  I have been dealing with workers compensation claims and helping to track employee’s FML usage.  I have also been able to communicate often with employee relations and the state’s worker’s compensation claims specialist.  It has been exciting to be able to fill the shoes of an actual HR generalist.

I feel as if I have also gained life experience and bragging rights from my time with the Department of Correction.  This past week I was able to tour the Pendleton Correctional Facility, which was quite an experience.  It was interesting to see how a maximum security prison operates and I know my friends are jealous that I was able to tour one of the state’s largest maximum security correctional facilities.

The new employee for the Pendleton Juvenile Facility starts this week, so I will be moving on to intern with the Small Field Operations division of State Personnel.  This internship has been great thus far and I am excited to see what Small Field Ops has to offer!