HR Project Career: Janina Wilde
Janina, how did your career in HR begin?
Janina: I studied HR for my Master’s degree and was looking for an entry-level job in HR at the time. I was particularly interested in the topic of employer branding, which I then discovered as a buzzword in a job advertisement from HR factory.
Sounds good, I thought, and simply applied. My current colleague Susanne guided me through the application process and got me excited about the topic of project careers.
This led me to my first project at a medium-sized pharmaceutical company, which I started together with another colleague. We were very lucky and received really great onboarding from our colleagues in the 15-strong HR department. We were given the opportunity to “run along” everywhere and actively grow into our role. Specifically, our areas of responsibility were applicant management on the one hand and the classic HR admin core business on the other. This quickly gave us many points of contact with different areas of HR.
Sounds like an exciting time. What happened next for you?
Janina: Absolutely! The project was originally only scheduled to run for six months, but was extended twice to one and a half years. Towards the end of this time, my learning curve inevitably flattened out and I was open to a new challenge.
I then found them in internal recruiting for HR factory. At that time, I had already gained experience in applicant management, but had never conducted interviews or made a hiring decision myself. Having the recruiting process in our own hands was really fun! Sure, the market is sometimes difficult, but I can draw really positive energy from recruiting.
It was exciting anyway, especially the conversations. I’ve always been interested: What kind of person is behind the résumé? What is the story behind it? I have repeatedly come across biographies that I find truly remarkable.
What aspects of your HR career to date do you value most?
Janina: There are a few things. For example, I like to quickly get a broad overview of a situation and find out which screws need to be tightened. Even though many of my previous areas of responsibility have required and trained specific skills – e.g. good people skills in recruiting – I see myself more as a generalist. As such, I feel that I am in really good hands in HR.
In general, I always like to familiarize myself with new topics. Project work is perfect for this because you get to know different sectors and different customers in different company sizes in a relatively short space of time. The learning curve is always extremely steep, especially at the beginning. I like it when things have a certain speed and develop a good dynamic.
Apart from that, HR factory as a company plays a special role for me. In my position as a recruiter, I naturally got to know many of our employees and was able to bring them on board. Now, when I come into the office or go to an HR factory event, I know almost all the faces. That’s really nice!
What are you currently doing and where do you want to go next?
Janina: I’ve been working on another project for a few months now, this time in the real estate industry. My role is a classic generalist one, I do recruiting, I accompany new hires, conduct job interviews, write contracts, take care of parental leave and maternity protection issues, transfers and also look after the managers in some departments.
So there is real dynamism in so many areas, especially because the company was recently split into two parts under company law. That was a challenge all of its own.
As far as my future is concerned, I am still curious about new topics and challenges that I can tackle. In general, an international, English-speaking environment would really appeal to me. I would find the software industry exciting, for example, and I could really see myself working in a start-up – at least for a while. After all, there are still so many topics to discover and people to get to know!