Life as a Human Resources Intern
My name is Justyna Pilarczyk and I would like to share with you my Schneider Electric internship experience. It has been already 6 months since I joined and I have thousands of things to tell you about my time here so far and how it is aligned with the Core Values of the organization.
Everything started when I saw Schneider Electric’s job offer: “Human Resources intern”. I thought that this is a perfect fit for me. Let me explain why:
I have always wanted to work within HR. I enjoy working and helping people. In addition, our team provides support to our employees in Spain and it is a perfect opportunity for me to practice and improve my Spanish language skills. I did not have any previous experience in HR but I was dead set on getting this opportunity. And here I am! 😊
I really liked Schneider’s image as a modern organization in which young people are important and considered as drivers of the future. Furthermore, already being “inside” I have learned the company values in detail and know that they are well aligned to my own. They are: Learn Every Day, Embrace Different, Dare to Disrupt, Act Like Owners and Customer First.
One of my favourites is Learn Every Day. At Schneider Electric your professional growth is key. That’s why Schneider offers many ways of developing yourself through online courses (eLearning), conferences, panel discussions with SE leaders and much more. As an intern, I am literally learning every day and a company culture that supports this makes things a lot easier!
During the first two weeks, I participated in an onboarding programme which is a curriculum of training with SE experts about Schneider values, internal regulations, HR applications, our own working tools, etc. Later on, I had some individual trainings organized by my team getting a deeper understanding of the roles & responsibilities that I would have during my internship. As an intern, I am learning a lot and very fast because everything is new to me. Obviously, I had to learn how to use some special apps and tools which we use on a daily basis, but also many other not so obvious things. Such as teamwork collaboration and the HR business model and where we are placed within the huge structure of Schneider Electric.
Schneider Electric’s employer branding motto is: “Great people make Schneider Electric a Great Company”. I agree with that 100%, everyone I work with is very helpful, open and supportive. My team is amazing, I can openly ask them anything and they share with me their SE stories-on how they started their work in the company. I think the atmosphere in a team is essential: you need to feel well to do your job properly and I understand now why our Hub has been awarded for being a Vibrant Workplace.
My team performs several HR administrative tasks for Spanish employees and is in constant contact with our HR Business Partners in Spain. We are 5 people in the Spanish team, but in total, we are 10 people giving support to other countries and regions like Italy or the Middle East & Africa. Our department has around 100 employees giving support to the majority of EMEA countries, and what is most important for me is that we are diverse in terms of nationality and culture. Because Schneider embraces diversity, I am able to interact with people from different places around the globe, and of course improve my Spanish language skills thanks to daily discussions with my colleagues from Spain, Mexico, and Peru.
As a Human Resources intern, I started by doing simple things like: data management, onboarding and offboarding processes, management of local HR tools, providing Spanish employees with support and help whenever needed. But as time goes on, I am starting to perform other activities that involve more problem solving, analysis and soft skills.
Thanks to my job I am challenged to try out new things, especially when I need to call someone and solve his/her issue by connecting them with other departments within the organization to get it done. It might seem easy… right? But it means a great deal for me, because I consider myself a bit shy. I feel now that, with all these activities, I am developing my skills and it helps me to build my own self-confidence.
Every day we face a different challenge. And what do we do with these? We overcome them in the best way possible! Schneider inspires you to think bold and learn by failure. Working with people is not easy, but at the same time, it is very rewarding. When you hear “thank you” you feel that your effort is being appreciated.
Being a Human Resources intern at SE
I remember the first day I came a little bit late to the office because my train broke down… It was a stressful experience, because when you come late on your first day, you may cause a bad impression. Luckily, everything was okay. My manager picked me up from the reception and we went to get my laptop and other work assets. We took a short tour around the office and I went through my first training. On that very same day, I got to know all other new joiners and we were discussing together our first impression of the company.
Every intern at Schneider Electric is treated like everyone else in the organization, we have our own scope of activities, roles & responsibilities, as well as goals and development plans. Thanks to that I am the owner of my development plan and feel that my work is valued by others.
I had to learn how to organize my work much better, how to prioritize tasks and how to collaborate with others in the open space (where I am encouraged to speak my mind openly and suggest solutions). This shows how managers and colleagues trust interns to have a fresh perspective and insight. Interns here are not the ones that simply bring the coffee and make photocopies… they are the future! 😊
I also participate in a lot of workshops organized by Schneider Electric in Warsaw, as well as online trainings and conferences which allow me to develop myself in the HR field. In October, we hosted in our office our HRS Europe Leaders, it was a great experience to hear what the plans for the future are, get inspired by their career stories within Schneider and insights on how they have reached their current positions.
Summing up, my internship has been a great adventure and valuable experience so far. I am sure that in some way it will change my professional life because everything I do matters.
If you are interested in getting to know more about SE values and what it is like to be an intern here, then stay tuned for the next Day in the Life of an Intern blog!
Are you looking for an internship or career at Schneider Electric? For more information and open positions, check out all our careers on our website www.se.com/careers
About the Author
Justyna Pilarczyk is a Global HR Graduate Trainee at Schneider Electric’s Warsaw Hub. A graduate from the University of Warsaw, she is now working on HRS (HR Services) Warsaw Hub for the Spanish team. In this blog article she shares her experience what is it like to be an intern in the Warsaw Hub office.