I am currently undergoing a period of transition into a Project Management role for the transformational Convenience Development department of Caltex Australia’s business! While it may sound somewhat daunting, the opportunity to engage in high-level understanding within such an important area of the business is fantastic, particularly as a relatively junior employee.
Prior to this Project Management role, I spent six months in the Convenience Development team as an ‘Assistant Brand Manager’, with responsibilities in brand development, creation of marketing material and promotional content. My initial rotation was in Retail Operations, including departments such as: Convenience Retail, Centralised Logistics, Franchise Development and Training, as well as a particularly insightful stint in one of our company-operated retail sites, to really understand our site operations at forefront execution level.
Through each rotation I have had the pleasure of working closely with particular teams on regular day-to-day business operations, as well as further engagement on specific projects to add further value to the business. A number of these have been retail analysis (meal deal development and new product development), logistics route analysis (cost and time of given routing), customer service attendant training packs, and Data Management System analysis and repair. Through each of these elements comprehensive relationship building with both internal and external stakeholders has been paramount to success.
Seamlessly! The support networks provided to me within Caltex have allowed me to undertake responsibilities with near immediate effect. A successful induction period of integration broadened my understanding of the holistic business prior to engaging in my initial rotation and detailed understanding of a given business unit. The provided mentor relationship has been fundamental in creating a positive environment of care, whereby a given mentor has followed my development through the business and always been on hand to provide support.
As a NSW mid-north coast native, the transition to Sydney life has additionally been assisted by my colleagues, notably fellow graduates who have provided a further support network.
I chose Caltex because it provided a great organisational fit for my existing skillset, whilst also providing avenues to broaden my business acumen and exposure. As an ASX-listed, Australian shareholder owned company, Caltex Australia provides additional input into the domestic economy. Primarily interested in the fuel and supply chain structure of the business, I have been pleasantly surprised with my involvement in the development of Caltex’s retail strategy – a testament to the positive leadership within Caltex to adopt change and diversify income streams.
The opportunities, learnings, support and of course, the challenges! As an individual engaged in a graduate program whereby a core objective of my employment is to learn the holistic operations of the business, the challenges are truly rewarding in providing broad understanding of a petrol and convenience industry leader.
The networking capability, exposure to senior management, support functions and engagement with transformation projects are exceptionally rewarding.
To prospective graduates – provide a point of difference! Philosophically, ‘we all are unique individuals’, at that testament truly is reflected in your individual experiences, values, personality, insights and potential contributions. Further, do not lose sight of your goals – retain a positive attitude, and endeavour to achieve.
To those engaged in graduate programs or entry-level positions – embrace the opportunity and continue to immerse yourself in high-level, holistic learning.