Five minutes with: Bec Grice

Corporate headshot of Swinburne Alum, Bec Grice

Since graduating from Swinburne with an Advanced Diploma of Human Resources and a Bachelor of Business (Human Resource Management and Marketing), Bec has set her sights on what the future of work will look like and how we can prepare for it.

We sat down with Bec to find out about her time at Swinburne and how it helped develop her passion and vision for people development in Industry 4.0.

How did your time at Swinburne contribute to your career?

I think having the combination of TAFE and Higher Education was a tremendous help to my career, as it gave me experience in both the practical and theoretical aspects of human resources. Essays and exams were not something I initially enjoyed so the practical focus in the Advanced Diploma really helped with my confidence.

In the Advanced Diploma I learnt a lot about adult learning. I remember having to facilitate and develop a few classroom training courses which was probably when I first became interested in Learning and Development.

Can you tell us about your current role at Siemens?

I have been with Siemens for five years and during this time had the opportunity to work in talent acquisition, program management and learning roles.

I am currently the Learning Manager for Australia and New Zealand, responsible for all business learning activities. In this role I work with our global learning campus and HR leadership teams on developing skills needed to progress current and future employees. It is an exciting time to be in this role, as learning is playing a pivotal part in helping employees adapt to the digital disruption that we see all around us.

What does the future of work look like for you?

For me, Industry 4.0 and the age of digitalization requires a higher level of applied knowledge and transferable skills. From an organisational learning perspective we understand the future of work is not just about technology but also about human elements of critical problem solving, collaboration and emotional intelligence, and how these skills can be applied across various different roles and scenarios. 

The challenge and opportunity is in how we support our business and employees by equipping them with the skills they need to transition to the future of work and become resilient to the changing environments and behaviours that come with digital transformation and Industry 4.0.

What have been your career highlights since graduating from Swinburne?

One of my most memorable experiences was last year when Siemens was recognised at the Australian Training Awards as Employer of the Year for Apprenticeships. This was for the Industry 4.0 Higher Apprenticeship Program that Siemens developed in collaboration with Swinburne and the Australian Industry Group.

At the time I was the Vitality Program Manager looking after our Intern, Graduate and Industry 4.0 Higher Apprenticeship Programs. Working with Swinburne, the Australian Industry Group and other industry partners on the development and implementation of this program was a career highlight for me. To be a part of a program that was future focused and pushed the boundaries of post-secondary education in Australia was very challenging but also a highly rewarding experience.

What advice would you give to current Swinburne students?

Recently I joined the Siemens HR Team to facilitate a workshop for students from Swinburne’s Master of Human Resource Management. The workshop explored the challenges companies face in preparing for the future of work, including career development and how to manage having five generations working side-by-side. Students had an opportunity to visit our offices, meet with some of our managers and employees and unpack the topic before pitching their initiatives and ideas back to us.

If I could use this example as advice, it would be to try to create opportunity to connect with Industry to understand how the theory and methodologies you learn at university connect to the workplace, whether this be through project based experiences, internships or holiday work experience it all adds value to your learning experience.