I’m Melissa, a 2021 Graduate and part of the Group Technology graduate program.
I studied IT and Innovation at UTS, and on the weekends/in my spare time I love taking some time out to go to the gym, an experiment in the kitchen, and hang out with my friends and family closest to me.
Explain what your business area does or its function within the group.
Group tech covers all things technology within the Westpac group. It’s one of Westpac’s biggest business areas, with over 900 teams. Anything you can think of – they probably do it. From network security to technology risk management, architecture, infrastructure, to agile ways of working, to software and application development; they have a range of functions. Group tech is the entire back-end of the bank, keeping Westpac’s systems, applications, and banking services running 24/7.
Why did you apply for a graduate role at Westpac Group, and why your chosen business area?
Since studying IT, I always knew I wanted to land somewhere in the technology field, I just wasn’t sure where specifically. Westpac’s group tech grad role allows their grads to experience four different rotations all over technology. The chance to get a feel for what I might like regardless of my previous experience or prior knowledge (e.g. I can do a rotation in a technical role even if I have no past technical experience) was the main reason I wanted to take on this grad role. Essentially, it’s giving me a chance to figure out what I’d like to do. I was also lucky enough to have worked part-time with Westpac before undertaking this role. Having known the culture and ways of working that Westpac promotes, it was an easy decision to want to stay here and develop my career.
To date: please provide an overview of the rotation(s) you have completed and, if cross-functional, which business areas/groups you have worked in
Currently, I’m still in my first rotation with Westpac. This role is based on Agile transformation in the technology sector – more specifically trying to reach all of the tech teams and converting them to an Agile way of working. There are about 900 tech teams and so far we have an adoption rate of about 40%. We work a lot with the teams and engage in an active Agile Community of Practice.
To date: has there been a project you have been involved in that you found particularly exciting or engaging?
I’m a part of quite a few Employee Engagement Groups – these are super engaging as there are plenty of sessions and networking events to attend (even virtually!). Soon I’ll be attending the full-day Women of Westpac Summit, where there will be speakers and insightful sessions and networking opportunities all on the same day. These are some really amazing opportunities to take part in!
So far, what has been the highlight of the graduate program?
The network of people I’ve met is amazing! I was reluctantly starting a graduate program being mostly working from home, but I’ve still made invaluable connections and friendships here at Westpac.
What is one thing you love about Westpac Group?
The people I’ve met at Westpac have all been nothing but amazing. Not just in my team and close networks, but everyone I’ve come across! You can quite literally start a conversation with anyone and they’ll be more than happy to have a chat with you (and go for coffee!).
Which of our five values – Helpful, Ethical, Leading Change, Performing and Simple – resonates with you most, in terms of your role as a Westpac Group Grad, and why?
I would say ‘Performing’ resonates with me most. As a grad, you might think that people will be with you every step of the way to help get your tasks done. While you’re being surrounded by a team of people who are always happy to help where help is needed, this value emphasises the importance of taking accountability for yourself and your decisions. I have learned to not ask for approval every step of the way if it is not necessary, and I am transparent with everything I’m working on (and if I need any help).
What role/area/project are you excited to get involved in the post-Grad Program?
After working in an Agile transformation team, I would love to get more hands-on with Agile ways of working as a Scrum Master. I would love to be able to help teams and people to create a psychologically safe team with a great work/life balance, all while getting the work done.
What is unique about your ‘Uncommon Mind’?
I’m a tech grad, but I absolutely adore the creative arts and abstract ways of thinking.
Please describe your business area in three words.
Cross-functional, integrated, innovative.
Please sum up your Grad experience (to date) in three words.
Enlightening, supportive, always-learning.
Anything Additional to Add?
I’ve been having a great time so far as a group tech grad and have definitely (in my short time being a grad) got far more of an idea of where I would like to be in the future! I am also constantly learning new things which have been another huge highlight!