Emma Eason is over the moon to be involved in Ryman’s new graduate programme
Emma Eason is loving every day at Ryman Healthcare as she learns more and more from fellow Rymanians and takes giant steps in a two-year graduate programme.
Emma started her first of three, eight-month rotations, with Ryman’s Human Resources team in mid-January. The fact that she was to start with the HR team (but will later move into other teams) was a surprise but a very pleasant one.
“Laura (Walker, Ryman Trainee People Development Advisor) did an amazing job of the induction week for the grad programme. We had so many activities and so much fun.
“We learned a lot about the company… which helped us settle in and get to know people really quickly. So, we had meetings with the design team, the marketing team, communications, we got to get an overview, which I found really helpful.”
Emma became aware of the Ryman graduate programme in April-May 2020 and was intrigued. She sent in her CV and covering letter and says she was very happy to receive an initial phone call from the Ryman Recruitment team asking if she would like to take the process further.
As part of the interview and recruitment process, the Cantabrian was required to think about her tertiary training and how it might relate to her career.
Her initial University of Canterbury Bachelor of Science degree included majors in both chemistry and biological psychology. She then took it a step further with a PhD or doctorate in psychology, where her thesis investigated the associations between EEG (a technique that measures brain activity), and cognition in Parkinson’s disease.
Her doctorate study and subsequent work with the New Zealand Brain Research Institute, in Stewart Street, Christchurch, involved complex equipment, enabling her and others to measure such things as spontaneous brain activity in a range of individuals with Parkinson’s disease to assess potential markers for future cognitive decline.
The recruitment process also involved interviews, a short psychometric test, and a chance to present to a group of Rymanians, focusing on the qualities in her studies that could be applied to work at Ryman.
“I took a different approach to the presentation – and talked about teamwork, communication and those sorts of things… Then they offered me the job,” she says.
Her decision to accept was related to the feeling she had, even at this early stage, that Ryman was the right place for her. “I’m very much a people person, and I knew that I wanted to help people whether that was research-based or something else.”
Looking at Ryman’s core values, including the company’s focus on providing facilities and care that are ‘Good enough for Mum or Dad’, also helped the decision. “When I looked those values up, I thought that’s definitely what I’m about – that drew me in, knowing that Ryman actually cares.”
As part of the two-year graduate programme, she will do another two, eight-month rotations with other Ryman teams. This will include at least one placement on a construction site or at a retirement village supporting our operations teams. During the five or six weeks she has been with Ryman she says it has been a dream start to her work. “I’m always surprised at how flexible everyone is, and how accommodating people are – even with this ‘working from home’ option over COVID.”
She was also impressed by Ryman’s ‘pioneering’ spirit. The ‘Pioneers Wanted’ recruitment campaign is designed to put forward the company’s best characteristics to find the best people to work for our growing company. “In our first week, we had to do a project and a presentation to show what Ryman is going to look like in the next 10 years, and that encompasses the pioneering aspect – we can’t stay ‘stuck’,” Emma explains.
Ryman Recruitment Manager Matt Wright says the purpose of the programme is to develop graduates into future Ryman Leaders by giving them a unique opportunity to learn about all aspects of our company, from operations and construction to office and sales. “That’s why our graduates go through a rigorous and detailed recruitment process – we only want the best people!” Matt says.