Prior to joining, how did you find out about Delaware North?

I found Delaware North through an internship program associated with my study abroad program. I have always been an adventurous person, wanting to experience new things and this led me to inquire completing an internship abroad. I knew since I began university that I wanted to study in London and lucky for me, an internship program was available. After being accepted into the program, my CV was sent to organizations that were in fields of interest to me. My field of interest was Human Resources and this is how Delaware North found me, reaching out for an interview. From the moment I began my research on Delaware North I knew this was an organization I wanted to work with as they worked in stadiums. I have always been interested in working for stadiums as this is something I do in my hometown of Chicago. I then had an interview with Kerry, and I knew this was the place for me as it would give me the skills necessary to progress my career.

What was the most challenging part about coming over to London from Chicago?

The most challenging thing about coming to London was starting completely new. This experience was a fresh start with new friends and a new job in a new city. This was something I was completely prepared for, but you do not know how intimidating it is until you have arrived and it all comes to light. However, I kept an open mind and made sure to be myself to make this easier. I was able to make friends that will last for a lifetime, who have travelled to many parts of Europe with me. I have had an experience working abroad, this is not something most individuals can say. All in all, I believe my biggest challenge turned into my biggest accomplishment in the end.

Tell us about your time with Delaware North?

In summary, while interning with Delaware North I have experienced many new things. Before beginning my internship I did not know how a large organization handled the large amount of candidates applying for positions and how the process progressed over time. On the very first day, I performed an exercise where I put flash cards in order of what I believed the recruitment process to be. Needless to say, I put a number of these cards in the wrong order because I was not thinking about to the little steps in the process. But now, I have attended assessments where I met candidates and helped in the decision process, sat in on phone interviews, and worked with the HR team to understand all the steps in the process. Overall, this was a great experience where I was able to work with a group of awesome people.

Were there any particular projects you worked on?

The main project I worked on throughout the 12 weeks was called ‘How They Hire’. This project required me to research competitors of Delaware North to understand the recruitment processes to gain insight into successful candidate experiences. Some of the areas I looked at were: what job boards do they use, what is the application process, what is the key messaging, and what do the careers social media accounts contain. Before this project I had never applied to a job online as I have always worked in a receptionist job or applied for internships through my university. This experience showed me that even something as simple as an unattractive careers website can be a make or break for a candidate throughout the process. All in all, it gave me information to take back to my team on how Delaware North can improve their processes in ways their competitors are.

What would you say are the key things you have learned?

At Delaware North I have learned the ins and outs of the recruitment process. The top three things I have learned are:
• How to create a job advertisement that is both inviting and informational to create a positive candidate experience
• I understand both a variable and permanent recruitment process in full – helping me to understand what a good candidate is and how they are chosen for a position in a large organization
• As this is my first internship, how to immerse myself in an organization and become a part of a team that is new to me

What will you take away from your time with Delaware North?

The main takeaway I have had from this experience is the interworkings of what makes a successful recruitment process. Like any organization, it starts with recruitment to bring in employees that will help them to grow and prosper. However, though recruitment seems simple, it is not. It takes a multitude of people to make the process work. Though sometimes I felt I was only filing paperwork, this was just a step in the process that everyone must understand because it leads you to the end result of a working employee. When first coming on to the recruitment team, I did not understand the process at all. But now I can confidently say that I understand the whole process and can use these tools I have gained in my future career.

So Jaque, what’s next?

Upon my return to the U.S. I will start another internship with a risk management firm to explore another area of business that is of interest to me. However, I have worked in Human Resources since I was 16 years old and have always felt this is where I will end up upon graduating. I will be graduating from university in May of 2020 and at that time I hope to have a full time position hopefully working in a stadium in Chicago. Whether this be for a sports team or for an organization similar to Delaware North that is contracted to work in the stadiums. I look forward to the future and am excited to see the places I will go.

From our point of view…

What do we do to support interns after they have worked for us?

In Jaque’s case we will be in a positon to put her in contact with our US team so that are aware of her skills and experience her in the UK. This would mean that we would potentially be in a position after she has finished her studies to offer her a longer term opportunity. As a UK team we will keep in regular contact with Jaque to support her in any way we can.

Often those that are university leavers or still at university that intern with us go on to secure full-time positions within Delaware North. The last 3 interns we have had here at Delaware North from Oxford Brooks University have gone one to secure permanent roles within Delaware North either in the UK or internationally in the US or Australia.

How we benefit from interns?

Interns offer innovation to an organisation, they bring in new, fresh and current ideas of the world today and what a target market in terms of a candidate might be looking for and want in a business they are interested in coming to work for. This also helps with our Employer Brand from an outward facing stance and helps widen the areas of talent we may, as a brand, appeal to. As we have discussed above, interns can also provide us with a talent pipeline and often be considered against entry level vacancies available at the time, not only in HR but we have also seen examples, here in the UK of this happening within our IT function too.