What's your full name?
What’s your position?
IBL, Training Academy
What are you studying?
Bachelor of International Business (minoring in E-Supply Chain Management) at RMIT.
When will you graduate?
Where did you grow up? Important stages of your life (school, education, experience abroad, previous jobs.)
My family is originally from Sri Lanka, both my parents and sister were born there however I was born in Australia. I grew up in Victoria studying at Dandenong Primary School and completed high school at Berwick Grammar school before undertaking my undergraduate studies at RMIT. would say my experiences at high school was really important in shaping who I am today. Growing up I was very shy and had little to no confidence in my own abilities and in talking and interacting with others. To this day, I still have some issues with my confidence but if it wasn’t for what I did in high school I don’t think I’d be where I am today.
How did you land your current position and how long have you had it for?
I applied for my current position as part of my Industry Based Learning (IBL) segment of my degree. Out of all the positions available at Mercedes-Benz, the Training Academy position was the most appealing as it offered a broad range of activities and responsibilities to help me build my overall business skills. I commenced in January of 2019 and have learnt so much in my short time here. As this was my first full time position, it was daunting but now I feel I am gaining the skills to equip me for the business world.
How did you choose your specialisation (compared to others)? / Were you weighing up any other alternatives before choosing this specialisation?
I had not chosen my specialisation (E-supply chain management) until 6 months into my position at Mercedes-Benz. Up until then I had known the business world was my path, but was unsure which part of business to specialise in. It is the main reason I chose my degree as it gave me a view into various field within business. My decision to minoring E-Supply Chain Management was unfluenced by my dad as he comes from the field too and after reading and discussing, it’s the area I would like to follow.
What was your interview process like? What kind of questions were you asked?
From when I applied and when I received my offer, the process of securing my position was efficient. The questions in my interview were mainly focused on my character and how the subjects I studied at university would give me the necessary skills for the position at hand. I was surprised that there were not many questions based on my grades themselves but rather my extra-curricular activities. A lot of emphasis was placed on soft skills.
What are your areas of responsibility?
The great thing about my position is I don’t do the same thing day in day out. I’m an all rounder who helps all members of the team with their tasks and projects. My tasks can range from registration in our training platform to assisting with the implementation of a nationwide training initiative. The majority of my tasks revolve around database management, maintenance and cleansing, training event organisation, registering and liasing with learners and learning co-ordinators. I am always being introduced to new tasks and projects which makes my positon very interesting.
Can you describe a typical workday?
What was the last thing you worked on? A typical day for me starts with a cup of coffee, whilst checking my emails. From this point, I can plan the rest of the day based on any emails I receive and any requests form my team members. I have a ‘To Do’ I keep on my desk that allows me to organise the way in which I work and prioritise takes based on their urgency. I also tend to get many requests throughout the day and having a list really helps me remember and organise which tasks require completion. It can be challenging when there’s a lot going in but it’s surprisingly fun. Currently my manager and I are implementing a nationwide incentive program to get learners more involved in online training.
What are the career prospects with your job? / Where could you or others in your position go from here?
I think I am well prepared for other business positions that may come my way in the future both within the organisation and outside of it. The placement has opened me up to other pathways I had not considered prior to joining.
Could someone with a different background do your job?
I don’t think my position requires any specific educational background, a broad background in business is beneficial however with time and dedication anyone can learn and progress.
What has been the biggest learning curve for you?
The biggest curve was the transition from university life to working full time. At university whilst there is some responsibility placed on you, working full time there is a lot more as others within the team rely on you.
What do you love the most about your job? Which kind of task do you enjoy the most?
The best aspect of my position is the variety of tasks and exposure to different stakeholders including our Headquarters in Germany. My favourite tasks to complete revolve around certification testing. When we run these testing periods, it can get quite busy and hectic and requires a lot of organisation but is a really interesting experience.
What are the best aspects of working here?
One of the best aspects is being able to work for and contribute to a global leader in the automotive industry. Working for such a large organisation and viewing the inner workings has been invaluable. The people and the culture are also great aspects, there is great emphasis placed on employee welfare and education and if I ever have any issues or thoughts to share with my co-workers or my manager, they are always receptive. It’s also great to be given a lot of responsibility as it has allowed me me to develop my own skills and my confidence in them.
What’s are the biggest limitations / challenges of your job?
I wouldn’t say there are any great limitations that impact my work. If there are any issues, managers and co-workers are always very helpful. It helps that there is a lot of autonomy in the work place, it allows people to complete tasks the way that best fits them.
Which three pieces of advice would you give to a current university student? They don’t necessarily have to be related to your role, or even be career-focused.