Monday, December 12, 2016

Living the Dream in SPD - by Ashley Spears

Tuesday, 10/25/16:
This past week, I had the opportunity to experience many different aspects of Human Resources. I first began my week by attending one-on-one meetings with SPD agency leadership and job shadowing the Employee Relations team. Matt Brown, Employee Relations counsel, began our one-on-one session by introducing the background of Employee Relations, the team players in Employee Relations, and discussing the Family Medical Leave Act. He then introduced his coworkers, Alan Ferguson and Taylor Pennell, who went into more detail about Family Medical Leave. After hearing their presentation, I developed a deeper understanding of the rules, regulations, and process of requesting time off.

The next group of Employee Relations personnel I shadowed were Drew Hewitt and Sean Brown. They spoke with me about civil service complaints. A few weeks prior, I gained knowledge of civil service complaints by interning at Department of Child Services and taking part in an employee relations project. Because of that, I was familiar with a few components of the civil service complaint process but was not familiar with the history of classified/unclassified workers. Drew and Sean caught me up on the differences between classified versus unclassified workers.

I then met with Lavenia Haskett, who was an amazing presenter!! Lavenia first began her presentation by giving me a paper clip and asking me the question, “What could you do with this paper clip?” I answered her question in practical purposes but would never guess what one guy named Kyle MacDonald came up with. Lavenia showed me his video called, “What if you could trade a paperclip for a house?” which showed how one guy traded up one red paperclip to a house. She used this video as an illustration of how accommodations for disabilities are handled. Just like the guy in the video, accommodations are often times trial and error. Her presentation was extremely helpful in understanding the process and what is acceptable for accommodations.

The next presenters were Anthony Gibson and Terri Miller. I really found their work to be intriguing in how they take measures to make sure the government is not underutilizing affected classes or discriminating. After their conversation, I met again with Matt Brown joined by Betsy Huffman to discuss the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), State Employees’ Appeals Commission (SEAC) and unemployment. I then met with Jordan Bolden who spoke about investigations regarding alleged misconduct in the workplace. Having an investigative mindset, I really enjoyed speaking with Jordan. Last but not least, I spoke with Employee Relations Director Bruce Baxter. Bruce cleared the air on questions I had related to employee relations and job opportunities in human resources. It was inspiring to hear his story on how he got to be where he is today.
Thursday, 10/27/16,
Today I traveled to Indiana School of the Blind and Visually Impaired to job shadow Heather Whitaker. Over at ISBVI, I was able to live the life of a Human Resources generalist in the education field. It was such a beautiful campus with the leaves turning colors and being on the Monon trail. I enjoyed my time there and seeing what life portrays as a generalist.

Friday, 10/28/16:
Interviews!! My boss, Adam Beasley, and I conducted interviews for our spring internship. I sat in on the interviews and was able to ask interviewees questions. After our interviews we discussed our ideas on the candidates. I am really starting to enjoy recruiting!!

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