Why Young Talent is important to BW Offshore
Simen Asak Ruud has been working with BW Offshore’s Student and Graduate Programmes since the Company began its focus on recruiting and developing young talent. Today, in light of World Youth Skills Day, he shares some thoughts on why developing young talent is so important to BW Offshore.
“What if we one day could fly out a new Offshore Installation Manager having started his or her career as a Summer Intern in BW Offshore?“ This has been the long-term dream since we started what is now known as “BW Offshore Young Talent Programme” more than a decade ago. From the first time we approached a technical University in Norway to now having expanded to Singapore and several universities in Europe, we have been targeting forward-leaning open-minded students to join our global team.
The Summer Internship Programme is targeting students who have one more year remaining before they graduate. The main set up has been to bring 6 – 10 students together for the summer enabling them to get to know BW Offshore and see how we work. There are two main objectives for the Summer Internship; the first one is to find out whether or not the candidates are the right fit for BW Offshore, and secondly, to find out whether or not BW Offshore is the right employer for the students. By assigning the interns to real tasks and support them with buddies and mentors, we believe that through the internship, both BW Offshore and the students will have a solid basis upon which a decision can be made.
The Graduate Programme lasts for three years and out of the 6-10 Graduates we hire each year, we target to fill as many of the positions as possible with Summer Interns from the year before. During the Graduate Programme, the Graduates are exposed to different departments and different locations. They get to travel offshore, and we aim to give them as good an overview and insight as possible, into our company, but also into the industry at large. Even though we expect a high level of flexibility and an open mind, each individual Graduate’s programme plan is shaped in close dialogue with the Graduates themselves. We also actively use the Graduates in work related to both hiring and following up on Summer Interns and fresh Graduates. After the three years programme comes to an end, the Graduates continue as permanent employees.
Craig Ralston began his career in our company as a Summer Intern. He started back in 2012, and today he (among several responsibilities) is the Deputy Delivery Manager for our New Ventures and Technology team. Through his years with BW Offshore, he has been on several secondments and worked on multiple projects, gaining experience in many different areas. He is also one of our go-to persons to welcome students visiting our Singapore office to share his experiences. If you want to read more about his journey with BW Offshore, click here.
Developing talent is part of our Strategy
In BW Offshore, the Young Talent Programme is a core part of the Company Strategy. We believe in young talent recruitment and promoting from within our own organisation. By starting their working careers in BW Offshore, the Summer Interns and Graduates become great ambassadors for our culture and our values. Fostering a culture where we focus on learning and developing, we think that the energy and enthusiasm brought by these young talents has a great effect on the whole organisation and that their systematic and well-organised approach to challenges can teach everyone in the organisation a thing or two.
We were never in doubt on whether or not we could accommodate Summer Interns and new Graduates despite the pandemic.Simen Asak Ruud, Young Talent Programme Coordinator
Up until the global Covid-19 pandemic, BW Offshore usually gathered the Summer Interns for two weeks in Oslo before they spent three weeks together in Singapore, and then usually ended their internship periods in the BW Offshore office closest to “home”. The Graduates, being permanent employees, travelled back and forth between relevant offices, went offshore visiting our units in operation and they spent longer periods in our offices in other locations. All of the above is to experience different cultures and learn as much as possible. This all changed dramatically during the spring of 2020 and we, as the rest of the world, were forced to take a step back and think differently. All travel activities stopped almost overnight, and BW Offshore practiced an “as little travel as practically possible” approach, meaning we had to rethink how the Programmes were structured, and how we could adapt.
We were never in doubt on whether or not we could accommodate Summer Interns and new Graduates despite the pandemic. We continued to take onboard Summer Interns and Graduates because we believe it is that important. We adapted our programmes to fit the new normal, and continue to support and develop the young talents. This summer, we have six technical Summer Interns working in our organisation, as well as two new long-term Supply Chain Interns. Our Graduate Programme will have at least four new members, perhaps even more, before the end of the year.
We believe that someday, we will fly that Offshore Installation Manager to one of our units who started his or her career in BW Offshore as Summer Intern.
We look forward to that day.
Simen Asak Ruud, Young Talent Programme Coordinator