Human Resources Business Partner | QLD
After a long career across various industries, ASG Queensland’s Human Resources Business Partner, Tanya Manderson, made the switch to IT Services when she joined ASG in 2018. Tanya has since spearheaded some of ASG’s most important Diversity and Inclusion projects including the launch of ASG’s inaugural Reconciliation Action Plan in 2022 that will see ASG embark on an 18 month program to develop and strengthen the relationships between Aboriginal and Torre Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous peoples. In addition to delivering national projects, Tanya is dedicated to not only supporting individuals in the business but to creating an environment where our people and our communities thrive. Tanya is a thought-leader, risk-taker, and trusted HR Business Partner known for her warm and nurturing personality, creative initiative and accountability.
WHAT IS YOUR ROLE AT ASG AND WHAT DOES YOUR ROLE ENCOMPASS?
I’m the HR Business Partner for the Queensland region and am part of the wider National People & Culture team. My primary responsibility is to support Queensland and provide business focused HR strategies and policies which drive the region’s growth, staff retention and engagement. I also provide HR support to our Head of Operations and the wider national Operations group.
I also support leaders across all HR lifecycle initiatives and deliver HR projects, both local and national, such as the Reconciliation Action Plan, the Indigenous IT Traineeship program and the National Induction framework.
WHAT LED YOU TO A CAREER IN HR? WHAT DO YOU ENJOY ABOUT IT AND WHY ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT IT?
I was put on the HR path early in my career and found that I was quite good at it which of course makes it enjoyable. I feel like I am good at reading people and I can find that balance that HR needs to deliver with supporting people as well as the business. Then my HR studies over the years helped reinforce it all.
I didn’t start my career in IT. I’ve had my own consulting practice, I’ve worked in law firms both in Australia and the UK, in the public sector and with a large international property company.
I absolutely love the world of IT services. I get excited when we post an article or a case study because I just can’t believe I work with people that do what they do – clever people who are working across different technologies and using innovation to make a difference. I get a real buzz when I’m running a corporate induction session and get to the “What We Do” slide. It’s great to see how excited our new starters get about becoming a part of the amazing work we get to deliver at ASG.
HAVE YOU EVER HAD A CAREER ‘MISTAKE’ OR SOMETHING YOU’D LIKE TO REDO OR TAKE BACK? WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO YOUR YOUNGER SELF?
Absolutely! Quite a few years back, I was headhunted by a large private company who approached me with a lot of promises and a big offer. Something wasn’t quite right though; I could feel some sort of disconnect but I got swept up in the excitement and flattery of a fancy office and job title. Sadly, the promises never eventuated, it was never the right fit and I didn’t stay with that company very long. My advice would be to listen to your instincts and don’t let ego drive your decisions, it rarely works out. And when you find the right fit, you just know.
THE ROAD BACK TO NORMAL, INCLUDING GETTING BACK TO WORK, LOOKS DIFFERENT FOR EVERYONE AND HAVING KIND AND UNDERSTANDING MANAGERS AND A SUPPORTIVE WORKPLACE IS SO IMPORTANT.
HOW HAVE YOU SEEN ASG CHANGE & GROW IN YOUR TIME HERE?
I’m coming up to 4 years with ASG in September. There has of course been growth on the business side with acquisitions and our client base but also some great growth and development in our people which helps drive that business growth. I’m seeing a diversifying of our capabilities and in turn we’re diversifying the types of clients we deliver to. It’s a really exciting time and its great to be working for a company that is expanding and growing our offerings.
YOU GOT BLINDSIDED LAST YEAR WITH A PERSONAL ILLNESS AND HAD TIME AWAY FROM WORK. WE’RE ALL SO HAPPY TO HAVE YOU BACK. WHAT WERE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO GETTING BACK INTO OR WHAT DID YOU MISS THE MOST?
I really like HR, I’ve been doing it for such a long time, and when I was forced to take time out due to a cancer diagnosis, I missed it all – the interaction with people across the business and my team, the projects, and especially the normalcy of a work routine.
I was never planning to write about my experience and how it impacted me, I was just glad to be done with it. In the last 12 months, I’ve seen too many friends who have had to hit the pause button on their careers due to illness. The road back to normal, including getting back to work, looks different for everyone and having kind and understanding managers and a supportive workplace is so important. I shared my return-to-work experience in a LinkedIn article here.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE OUR CULTURE?
I’d describe it as both a learning culture and a supportive culture. I joined ASG because I got a good feeling about not only the people I would be working with but also the overall culture of the business and what ASG could offer for my career growth.
What I’ve learned over the years is that culture is not set and forget – it is something you have to always work on to either maintain it or make it better. I like that we’re constantly working on it at ASG as a priority and we’re learning along the way.