Meet our HR graduates
Our people are vital to our success and it’s our HR team that support our employees across the organisation. Meet Bex, Sophie and Katrina. All three started their Sky careers on our HR Graduate programme. We bought them together to reflect on their experiences and give an insight to the programme.
What were you doing before you joined Sky?
Bex - I studied at Strathclyde University in Glasgow. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do after my degree when I started. I actually began doing a social science degree and ended up doing a joint honours in Law and HR.
Sophie – I was at Bath studying Business Administration at the University of Bath. It was a broad degree where you could pick your modules based on interest. Across the 4 years I also got to complete 2 six-month placements, in HR and Marketing Communications. These were great for building my experience and helping me choose which direction I wanted to take my career in.
Katrina - I had finished my University course at Northumbria studying Business Management. I took a year out after uni, as I hadn’t fully decided what I wanted to do. The work experience I gained after gave me the opportunity to determine which career path I wished to follow and (more importantly) which companies / industry I felt passionate about joining and that lead me to Sky.
Which different rotations did you do on the grad programme and which was your favourite?
Bex – I did five rotations in total, all completely different! We have a companywide engagement survey and my first role was supporting the delivery of this. I then had roles working with the team that support the systems and main HR people processes that we use at Sky. These gave me a great grounding and in my final rotations I was supporting a directorate restructure, working in the Starting Out team supporting graduate recruitment and then also working with the People Development team designing and developing management programmes and inductions for new starters across the business. In all of them I was given so much responsibility from day one and looking back that was an amazing way to learn. In the Starting Out team I was helping out on the grad programmes from start to finish, careers fairs, interviews to planning and running assessment centres. Having not graduated so long before it was great being on the other side and helping Sky find the best talent.
Katrina - I had a real range too. Within 2 years I worked for recruitment, employee relations and Business HR. What’s fantastic about working for Sky, is not only do you get to experience the set rotations, you also get the opportunities to work on exciting projects within the scheme, enabling you to develop in areas which you never expect. For example, I worked on a project revising the HR intranet site, so developed skills in CMS Web design.
My favourite rotation was my business facing role. I worked with a great manager who was focused on my development, making sure I was exposed to lots of new opportunities and challenges. This was my final placement and it allowed me to demonstrate all my previous experience and learnings, whilst continuing to develop and stretch myself.
Sophie – My rotations differed to yours but my experience was really similar. Action-packed and moving really quickly! My programme kicked off in HR Services, where I had to get to grips with HR systems and processes before moving into the Technology Recruitment team for 3 months. I spent some time with Talent Attraction getting an insight into how Sky attracts top talent. From here I spent 6 months as a HR Consultant in Technology, putting my experience into practice with a business area of my own. In my final 6 months, I worked with the People Development team where I looked after a leadership programme for Heads of Department.
What’s your favourite thing about working at Sky?
Sophie – For me, my favourite thing without a doubt is the culture. It’s an exciting place to work and has a real buzz around the campus. People enjoy what they do and it shows.
Bex - The amount of opportunities that are available. Two years ago I was finishing the graduate programme and now I am a business partner. The programme gave me a great grounding and lots of experience and the fast pace really set me up for the role I’m in now. I really enjoy this constant variety and the changing environment.
Katrina - The opportunity and encouragement to develop. Not only do you get the opportunity for more formal study whilst on the grad programme, there are countless opportunities for self-development. This is aided by the pace of the organisation, as there is always something new to get your teeth into. There is never a dull moment working here!
One piece of advice you’d give to someone thinking of applying to a Starting Out programme?
Bex - If you want to work somewhere where you’ll be given real responsibility and you’re keen to learn, try new things and want to work with the best people, then you should definitely apply.
Sophie - Spend time on your application. The roles are really competitive but making sure you do your research, think about why you want to work for Sky and what excites you about the opportunity will put you in a great position. It’ll shine through.
Katrina - Embrace every opportunity given to you. Sky is a fast paced highly commercial organisation and you will get out of it, what you put in.