When Hollie Wiseman first applied to be part of Griffith University’s Work Integrated Learning program, she never could have imagined the scale of the project to which she would be assigned.

The former Bachelor of Business student, who majored in employment relations and human resource management had been seeking to expand her business horizons when she applied for an internship with GBS. She was given a choice of projects to work on, and selected the one that interested her the most, only later learning she would be seconded to Queensland Health.

“I was interested in getting some exposure to the HR industry, because my experience was quite limited,” Hollie says. The project was with the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Service (PSQIS) and involved Hollie playing a large part in influencing their future policy.

“They were upgrading their online learning platform,” the HR and Payroll Administrator for Next Hotels explains. “They wanted to ensure that with the upgrade they were adhering to all of the needs and wants of their employees. They wanted me to do a survey for Queensland Health and employees, and ask them how they found the platforms that they were using, what they didn’t like, what they really liked, what they would like to see, and get some general feedback and suggestions on moving forward.

But this wasn’t just to be a one-off project. Queensland Health had bigger plans for Hollie’s survey. “They wanted me to design something they could use as a benchmark, and sort of use it in future to monitor the changes going forward.”

Hollie says it put all the skills she’d learnt during her degree to the test, and expanded her strengths to prepare her for her future career. “It was a massive project and I had never done anything like it before, and dealing with such a massive company and trying to reach and make contact with so many employees proved to be a challenge, but very rewarding in the end.

She continues: “It was incredible. I was just a student from Griffith University looking for experience, but just getting something like that was so rewarding and so fulfilling in that it kind of felt like it validated everything I had done with my studies and work and life experience up until that point.”

Hollie says knowing that her work would impact future work for the department gave her a confidence she’s drawn on many times in her career in HR. “I just kept thinking I could actually be making a difference in the education of Queensland Health. It was extraordinary… it was just awe inspiring and very motivating to push myself that little bit further.

“I look at employee surveys a lot differently now and try to give answers that are going to actually make a difference, because the person that will be sitting and analysing that data is going to be looking for as much of an information-rich answer as they can get.”

The HR Administrator says she’s so thankful she applied for the WIL program and suggests other students would do well to do the same. “My experience was very rewarding,” she confirms. “I got to meet some great people, connections and networks that have helped me now step into my current job within HR. My advice to other students would be definitely do it. Take it run with it, and you know, learn as much as you can. If you learn nothing else other than getting a couple of contacts of people in the industry, then it’s worth it.

“It really does broaden your mind and makes you step out of your university bubble into the real world. I am very happy where I am at and I am so happy I did the degree because it got me my dream job,” she says.