She’s been working at Sii for almost 13 years. During that time she changed positions several times, gaining valuable experience that she still uses today. Ania Harmacińska talks about the benefits of the Job Changer program, employee concerns and the process of changing projects, technology, and much more.
You’ve been working at Sii for almost 13 years. What were your beginnings at the company like?
Before I came to Sii, I worked in sales and recruitment departments at various companies. At the same time, I knew that I wanted to develop in the direction of the broadly defined HR. When the opportunity to join the Sii team came up, I didn’t hesitate for long – the scope of my future responsibilities and the tasks ahead of me seemed very interesting. I had a recruitment interview with the then-director of the Wroclaw branch. The CEO of Sii Poland Gregoire Nitot also took part in it. Its result (as you can easily guess) was positive and that’s how I became part of our company. At that time, I didn’t know yet that I’d have a place at Sii for so long!
In the first months of my work, I was responsible for the recruitment process of candidates, I also took care of the administrative care of employees. One of my tasks was to organize events – we’ve been taking care of the good atmosphere at work and the satisfaction of our Power People for as long as I can remember. In addition, I was in charge of establishing and implementing the Employer Branding strategy at the time.
Interestingly, at the time I joined the Wroclaw branch of Sii, there were five employees. Today, after almost 13 years, there are almost 1 000. This difference still impresses me greatly and shows how much we have grown as a company.
The first important moment in your career path came after just one year of working for Sii – you were promoted then.
That’s right, after a year of my work at Sii, there came a moment when there was a need for more people in the department – that’s when I was promoted to a manager position. Even though my team at first consisted of only 3 people (later there were 11), managing it turned out to be quite a challenge for me. I lacked experience in this area, so I had to learn almost everything from scratch. I set myself the goal that the people who make up my team should always play to one goal, feel comfortable in each other’s company, support each other, understand each other, and strive together to achieve the tasks assigned to them. I knew that it was also important for employees to feel that they had support from me in any situation. I reassured them of this by constantly expanding my knowledge and gaining more and more experience. You could say that this was a moment in my career where I built a kind of leadership competency.
After a while, there was another important change in your professional life. You joined the so-called headquarters and became a Global Recruitment Manager.
As the company was growing faster and faster, there was a need for a new position – Global Recruitment Manager. I had some doubts before the recruitment process because up to then one of the most interesting functions for me was team management, all my strength and great motivation for work were in it. I’d no longer have this opportunity in a new, independent position. In the end, I decided to jump in at the deep end and take the risk – I was persuaded to do so by the opportunity for personal development, but also by the real impact on the development of the company, this time not from the local, but global level.
I quickly learned that working for the so-called headquarters is completely different from working for a local branch. The main difference was reacting and responding to the needs of employees from offices distributed all over Poland – their expectations differed depending on the size of the branch, the pace of development, etc. At that time, I was responsible, among other things, for optimizing global processes and applications in the recruitment area. I worked closely with Internal IT, Business Analysts, and Key Users from the recruitment department. All of my responsibilities required me to have a broad view, very good communication skills, as well as assertiveness.
You’ve now held the position of Job Changer Coordinator & Career Advisor at Sii for almost a year. Tell us more about this change in your responsibilities.
When the pandemic began, and thus remote work became much more popular, it quickly became apparent that the vast majority of projects carried out by Sii employees could be done from anywhere in Poland (and in some cases, even in the world!). At the same time, a decision was made to centralize the Job Changer tool and the search began for a person who could manage the application, control its quality and ensure the efficiency of the process. I applied for the position, encouraged by further opportunities for development and a new challenge. I’ve always felt great working with people – I’m very happy that I now have plenty of opportunities to talk to employees, get to know them better, and help solve their problems. The latter, by the way, gives me great satisfaction.
My day-to-day responsibilities include contacting employees who have submitted a request through the Job Changer application, discussing it, and finding a project, location, or technology that’ll appeal to them. The entire process, of course, is done in cooperation with their Line Manager. Besides that, I provide support in determining the career paths of employees, analyzing the Attrition Rate and Exit Interviews, Salary Grid, Job Market, and several other projects related to increasing employee satisfaction with their duties. The biggest challenge for me is certainly reconciling tasks from multiple areas and working out a healthy compromise, as well as managing my time, which is always in short supply after all!
Job Changer is a tool that allows you to request a change in your position or project, among other things. What other opportunities does it bring? To whom would you particularly recommend it?
Job Changer is a tool dedicated to all Power People, meaning Sii Poland employees. It allows you to change your position, project, and even technology or client. Additionally, it makes it easier to relocate to another city, where Sii has a branch, or to change the team that for various reasons may not suit an employee. Job Changer is therefore recommended to all those who need a change at any stage of their career path. I’m glad that we have a tool at Sii that allows this within the company – if an employee is dissatisfied with, for example, their position or project, they can decide to continue working with us, and at the same time turn their professional life around 180 degrees. On top of that, they retain continuity of employment, a sense of security, and stability. At the company, we have plenty of examples of people who have already benefited from Job Changer – I’m equally proud of each one!
So how does the change process work from the moment the employee submits the request?
As you mentioned, the first step is for the employee to apply via the internal portal dedicated to Power People. Once the application is filled out correctly, I contact the employee and we discuss it together. The Line Manager is also always involved in the process. The next step is to start the search for an interesting position, technology, or project. The client for whom the employee would perform tasks is ultimately responsible for the recruitment process and technical verification. Importantly, the decision to start, for example, a new project always belongs to the employee who decided to apply. He can also participate in several recruitment processes at the same time! This is a great solution for people who are still looking for their path.
What are the most common concerns employees face before using Job Changer?
Employees’ concerns before submitting a request often relate to the current Line Manager’s approach to the process. I hear, for example, “What if my supervisor is against it and blocks the change process?”. Such a situation is extremely rare and is only possible if the employee doesn’t fulfill the tasks set for them so far or Sii’s values, which we take very seriously. Improving the quality of work, however, guarantees the possibility of using the application. Also, one shouldn’t be afraid that during the change process the possibility of, for example, receiving a raise or development within the project in which the employee is currently working will be blocked – of course, everything depends on whether they perform their duties with proper thoroughness and maintain the high quality of work. We treat each team member fairly. In addition, everyone, regardless of seniority, position, age, gender, and more, can benefit from the Job Changer program.
It also happens that employees are afraid that they’ll receive unsuitable offers after applying – that’s why I guarantee a meeting, during which we’ll carefully analyze expectations and needs.
It is also worth remembering that the change takes place within 1-2 months on average, so the process isn’t long. If an employee is frightened by the vision of many recruitment meetings, I always reply, “You decide how many you will attend!”.
Do you ever find time to relax?
It depends on the situation. I’m just in the middle of a postgraduate course “Professional Coaching” at SGH. I’m planning to start meetings on this subject with our employees. I’ll be very happy to share my knowledge and experience! Apart from that, I’m interested in the issues related to meditation, energy, and inner development in the broadest sense. Recently, I took part in a workshop on kundalini yoga and meditation, during which, in addition to chanting mantras and performing asanas, I danced to get rid of blockages, cleanse and boost positive energy. Privately, I’m also a mother of two wonderful children, who constantly drive me to keep growing!
If you’re interested in the possibility of continuous development without losing employment continuity, a sense of security, and stability – apply! At Sii Poland, you’ll find many interesting projects and endless opportunities.