Jenny Southwell applied for her job after seeing an advertisement in
Personnel Today, and now works as an HR manager at the commercial arm of Zurich
Southwell took her new job to have a strategic influence on the direction on
the business through new HR policies and procedures. She now works as part of a
six-strong HR team, which provides the HR service to the insurance firm’s top
She reports to HR director Caroline Williams, who carried out the interview
along with the group HR director and the managing director.
Southwell identifies change management and culture change as the two big
challenges, but is sure of her future success.
"I’m confident that we will achieve our goals because we have great
leadership. I’m extremely proud to be part of such a winning team," she
"I’m driven by challenge and achievement and feel passionately about
the importance of HR working as an integral part of the management team."
She joins Zurich from the infrastructure and capital projects division of
Carillion, where she was HR manager for about 18 months.
The post advertised wasn’t actually for Southwell’s current position, but
the job description interested her enough to call Astralis, the agency that
placed the ad.
"If I remember correctly, the advert was at least half a page long and
printed in colour, so it was pretty eye-catching," she says.
"It focused on attracting senior HR consultants to the business.
However, when I read the detail I just felt it was talking my language, and I
guess this is what really prompted me to pick up the phone to explore it
further. The rest, as they say, is history."
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