The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the workplace. Employers and employees have learned new ways of interacting with each other, and thanks to technology and video conferencing tools like Zoom, the transition from working in an office to a home office has been smooth for many.
But it’s not just technology that made the transition for office workers easier. Human Resources (HR) professionals across the U.S. are working tirelessly to support their colleagues: answering questions, providing support and listening to concerns. Linh Nguyen, BBA ’13, discusses her role as Senior Human Resources Business Partner at SEI Investments Company and the influence Fox has had on her career.
Q: What role has HR played throughout the pandemic and new teleworking life?
A: HR has been critical in many areas throughout the pandemic and the transition to teleworking life. We’re helping managers keep their teams engaged, conducting one-on-one check-ins with employees and reviewing, creating policies, and procedures by prioritizing the wellbeing of our workforce. This environment has allowed us to show empathy and compassion for our workforce and, most importantly, put our people first.
Q: Can you explain your career trajectory?
A: I began my career with SEI as a university relations recruiter. It was a great role to learn about the various components of our business and how different parts of the organization connected to one another. I decided to leverage my undergraduate knowledge of HR and management information systems to assist in the launch of a new company-wide Human Resource Information System (HRIS). After this implementation, I transitioned over to an HR business partner role with a focus on compensation. This contributed greatly to my career’s next phase, performing the role of an HR business partner in our London office. While abroad, I focused on operational excellence and adhering to HR regulatory requirements. I then transition back to the U.S. in 2018 to support our U.S. business lines and continue focusing on compensation.
Q: Why is it important to stay connected with your Temple University and Fox School networks? What is the work that you do with your students?
A: I wouldn’t be here without Temple University and the Fox School of Business. I had two great professors, Andrea Brooks Lopez and Katherine Nelson, who still act as mentors for me today. They opened the doors of what a realistic role in HR could look like and how to bridge the gap between HR and the rest of the business.
The Center for Student Professional Development (CSPD) was also extremely beneficial while I was at Temple and when I began my career at SEI. Through these relationships, I was able to expand my network and learn to be successful in my role.
Throughout my undergraduate learnings and applying that into the corporate role, I realized how pivotal Fox has been for me in my career, and I’m very appreciative of that. Last year, I began to serve on the Department of Human Resource Management’s advisory board to help bridge academia and corporate life, so I can stay connected with the university and its students. We provide students mentorship, coursework assistance, mock interviews and informational interviews. We also participate in the senior send-off.
Q: What is something that you learned during your time working in the U.K.? Why is it important for students to get international experience?
A: We are living in a global economy, and the rest of the world doesn’t view the U.S. as the epicenter of all industries. If we continue to stay focused on one country’s viewpoints, it narrows our mindset and limits new thinking. I highly encourage international experience, whether it be physically relocating or just broadening knowledge outside of the U.S. During my time in the U.K., I learned a lot about cultural similarities and differences. London attracts people across the globe, so being able to gain a new perspective has helped me navigate obstacles in my personal and professional lives.