Military Background: Maritime Logistics – Support Operations, Australian Navy
New Civilian Role: Recruitment Consulting
New Company: Randstad
I joined the Navy in 2007 as a 17 year old. I was a member of the Maritime Logistics – Support Operations Branch. During my career in the Navy, I served on six ships across four different platforms, including: HMAS Tobruk, HMAS Parramatta, HMAS Ballarat, HMAS Canberra, HMAS Stuart and HMAS Yarra. Some career highlights include helping assist Tonga and Samoa after those countries were affected by Tsunamis in 2009 on OP Samoa Assist, being part of Australia’s commitment to counter-terrorism and anti-piracy in the Middle East Area of Operations in 2010 on OP Slipper and being a member of the commissioning crew for HMAS Canberra, the Landing Helicopter Dock and Australia’s largest ever warship. I like working with a diverse range of people and I feel the skill I have learnt in the Navy could be useful in the civilian world.
What did you like most about the Sales and/or Recruitment Course?
It helped me understand the different terminology and how the sales process works. Being in Defence for my whole working career, I really didn’t know or understand what all these things meant. It was essentially a foreign language to me.
How have you been the hero of your journey, to find, secure and excel in a new career?
Defence is really good at setting things up for you, all you have to do is follow the rules. My transition into the civilian world saw that you are out on your own. You need to be the master of your own destiny to excel, no one else will do it for you. It is easy enough to take a low paying job and be content, but if you want to take things to the next level and be successful, you need to be persistent and goal orientated. There are plenty of support groups out there to offer assistance but ultimately the bucks stop with you.
What obstacles did you come up against along the way, how did you navigate them?
My obstacles seemed to be that I was either overqualified for a role (when all I wanted was something entry-level to begin my career) or did not have the sales experience. It was tough, especially when I thought I could truly add value to an organisation but they couldn’t look past my CV.
What new skills did you have to learn?
I had to learn the sales process, and this is where With You With Me helped me get over the line. I had all the skills that you can’t teach which had been acquired over 10 years of work experience, but I needed the industry-specific knowledge. With You With Me bridged the gap and helped get my foot into the industry.
What advice would you give to someone in the same position that you were in?
It is easy to get disorientated with your transition. If you get knocked down, get back up again and keep trying. Use the resources that veterans are lucky enough to receive in order to be the master of your destiny. One key skill that Defence teaches everyone is to be resilient. So just because you are out of Defence, doesn’t mean you can stop being resilient.
What are you excited about in your new career pathway?
I am excited that I get to learn a whole different skill set and industry. 10 years in the Navy was amazing, I can’t wait for the next 10 in recruitment. Finding people their dream job is a pretty satisfying experience!
What do you think the future holds for your industry and how are you planning to progress your career?
The recruitment industry is booming. Globally, Randstad is the largest recruitment company but only the fifth largest in Australia. The potential for growth is massive and it is very exciting to be a part of this amazing organisation.