Image: Anh Caprile with BHP’s Functional Performance Team. Left to right: George Korn, Diane Djotaroeno, Stella Cirillo, Anh Caprile and Natasha Biggins.
BHP is a company that appreciates the enormous value of a diverse and inclusive workforce. So, when Diane Djotaroeno, Manager Functional Performance, was looking for an intern to join her team, Australian Network on Disability’s (AND) Stepping Into program piqued her interest.
Stepping Into is a highly valued talent pipeline for organisations actively seeking to employ people with disability as part of their recruitment strategy and in their graduate programs. It matches talented university students with disability to internship roles in leading organisations across Australia.
“I’d heard great things about the program from other BHP offices. With our company focus on inclusion and diversity, it made sense to approach the team at AND to discuss my requirements and see if they could help me – which they did!” Diane said.
When she interviewed Anh, a candidate put forward by AND, Diane felt confident both Anh and the team would reap great rewards from the pairing. She was looking forward to the opportunity to give Anh exposure to the working environment and put her university learnings into practice.
“I knew there was a lot we could do for Anh, but I was also keen to see how the team would benefit,” she said. “I felt there’d be opportunities for mentoring, and also for us to gain insights into how we could make the workplace truly inclusive for people with disability.”
Quickly, Anh found her place in the team, navigating new processes and systems with confidence and delivering quality work, which soon saw her working beyond an intern’s level.
When it came to workplace adjustments, the systems that made the most difference to Anh were already in place. BHP operates a flexible working policy for staff, which proved invaluable for Anh.
“At BHP, our flexible work practices mean all staff can enjoy a better work-life balance and more easily meet their commitments outside of work,” said Diane.
“In Anh’s case, it meant she didn’t need to worry about her medical appointments, and she could also work from home when she needed to.”
“BHP’s flexible working policy has been fantastic and allowed me to work at my full capacity,” said Anh.
Image: Anh at the Olympic Dam Planning & Technical Team Day.
Anh made such a positive impact in her time at BHP that what started as an internship position has turned into a year-long part-time role.
Among other projects, she played a major role in developing a communications strategy, which has now been endorsed by Leadership, and created an on-boarding website for new recruits.
“Anh is an absolute gem,” said Diane. “We’re so pleased to have found her, and that she’s decided to stay – what a bonus!”
As for Anh, she’s delighted they found each other too.
“Stepping Into has been a wonderful experience, and the learning curve has kept me on my toes. I’m just so thankful to have had this opportunity”.
About Stepping Into
Stepping Into is a national internship program run by the Australian Network on Disability. It matches skilled university students with disability to internship roles at leading organisations.
Since Stepping Into started in 2005, more than 1200 students have gained internships with over 110 organisations across Australia. It has become a valued talent pipeline and an effective foundation from which organisations can:
- Change attitudes
- Build disability confidence
- Improve hiring practices
- Enhance inclusive leadership
- Cultivate a diverse and inclusive workplace culture.
A rewarding experience for both the intern and their host, 96% of Stepping Into supervisors said they’d do it again.
Uni students, apply for an internship this summer
We’re currently accepting applications for internship placements in summer 2019-20. Organisations hosting internships this season include ANZ, Attorney General’s Department, Barwon Health, BHP, Department of Education and Training, IAG, Telstra, University of Sydney, Victoria Police, Westpac and more.