As many first term-ers, I walked in to the orientation room on Day 1 with mixed feelings of excitement for my first “big kid job” and fear for OH MY GOD my first big kid job! However, over the course of the following weeks and months, my fear turned into a passion for the work I do and the people I get to do it with. Here I am at Safe Software as a Human Resources Assistant Intern in my 8th month of my initial 4 month co-op thinking, “wow does time ever fly when you’re having fun.”
Getting Settled In
Right from the get go, our cohort of co-ops was welcomed with open arms and smiles (and not to mention a catered lunch with the co-founders!). We had a week-long orientation that involved getting to know the various teams at Safe and how to use their product, FME. Despite the fact that I was an HR student in a tech company who had no technical capacity (other than how to open up Word on her laptop), the team really helped me understand the capabilities of the product in a way that didn’t make me feel out of place sitting with (what felt like) a whole bunch of Steve Jobs’.
Once our orientation was over, it was time to start working with my team. I felt as though my years of education weren’t enough to equip me with what I needed to know to fulfill my duties in this role (talk about imposter syndrome). And boy oh boy was I ever wrong! My team lead sat with me everyday for the first couple of days to train me on things such as what to look for when screening resumes, how to edit job descriptions, and even how to post co-op jobs with local universities. With the help of my team lead’s fantastic mentorship and patience, I was able to grasp the ropes quickly and by the time I knew it, I was able to do most tasks on my own! The amazing leaders at Safe are truly invested in helping you develop your skills in tandem with the growing organization.
The types of projects I’ve had a hand in are ones I don’t think I would have been exposed to anywhere else. I’ve had the opportunity to work on a plethora of projects that have provided me a holistic HR experience. Coming to the job with just two HR courses under my belt was intimidating, to say the least, as there was so much I didn’t know. Yet my team did not underestimate me one bit! They gave me ample opportunity to explore all the parts of HR I knew and the parts I didn’t! Some interesting areas I got to take part in were doing phone interviews, sitting in on and eventually conducting interviews, and researching ways to enhance the career development plan for employee growth.
One interesting project I spearheaded with a fellow co-op student was creating a co-op website for Safe. We put together some research on what information co-op students look for and created an insightful and informative site for co-ops, made by co-ops. Collaborating with a peer on this project, we were able to create a very meaningful project that we could take ownership of. Our co-op website creation is live on the Safe Careers page at www.safe.com/careers/co-op!
Coming onboard in the midst of an office move was quite the journey. Seeing the company go from a quaint 2 floor office with coffeehouse style vibes and one very narrow staircase to encompassing the top 6 of 13 floors in a high rise tower at the heart of downtown Surrey, has made me truly appreciate the growth of this ever expanding organization. I had the chance to lend a helping hand with the move and witness the 25 years of hard work come to fruition!
What’s Work Without Some Play?
Many big tech companies have a reputation for providing more than a means to a fun and engaging workplace for their employees (I think we all know I’m referring to Google’s office slides), and Safe is no less! Starting from the 12 Forward lunchroom lounge (paying homage to our fellow Trekkies), it is a sight to behold. From the sun rising over Mount Baker on one end, to the beaming skyscrapers in the hub of Surrey, if your morning coffee doesn’t wake you up, the surreal views all around will be sure to. Not to mention the state-of-the-art gym facility has spectacular views of Green Timbers forest. Which essentially means you don’t have to stare at a wall while running on the treadmill.
As the amenities here are great, so are the people! Being in a workplace where you share common interests outside of work is truly a treasure. Soccer and hockey are played quite frequently with skills ranging from “this is my first time kicking a ball” to “I live and breathe FIFA,” so everyone is welcome to join. The people here do a great job of organizing activities such as karaoke nights, pool and board games, and even a running group for the Sun Run!
This innovative, forward-thinking, and quirky organization is one that has enabled me to enhance the skill set I had and develop it far more than I could have ever imagined. I felt like a Safer when I first came, and I’ll truly feel like one when I leave.