Focus on Abby Cade - People Business Partner

Published : Thu 1st Dec Author : National Trust

“I have been working in HR for a long time…..17 years.  I started off working as a Recruitment Assistant in an HR Consultancy in Sydney, Australia whilst studying.

I kind of fell into it – I knew I wanted to do something that would not pigeon-hole me into any one type of organisation and HR offered this.  When I looked at what was available at college it was either HR or marketing.  One of my cousins worked in what was then called ‘personnel’ and suggested I give it a go – so I did!

I have been lucky enough to work in a wide variety of industries – retail, utilities, property, industrial services, HR consultancy and of course, the charity sector. I joined the Trust because I’m passionate about our heritage and when combined with my profession it offered me my ideal job (sorry, a bit corny!).

Abbey Cade - People Business Partner

I have been working here in total for 7 years with a break in between of two years when I went off to work in retail to broaden my experience.  Sometimes we need to leave an organisation to progress – even if we don’t really want to.  It absolutely worked out for me as within two years an opportunity arose back in the Trust – and I was successful!

I am hugely inspired by the places we work in and am constantly impressed by the level of passion our employees have for their work.  Every day is different which keeps things interesting – there is definitely no time to get bored.

I also enjoy, in my role of People Business Partner, being part of a Region’s Leadership team – playing a part in the strategic direction of the region and supporting the senior team to succeed. There is real opportunity to add value which I find very motivating.

Every day offers an element of development – however small.  From a professional development point of view the Trust has supported me to complete my post-graduate HR qualifications along with supporting my wider interest in the Trust as a heritage/conservation organisation – I am currently just over half way through a Masters in Archaeology and Heritage Management.

Within the People team we are given regular opportunity to get involved in Trust-wide project work which continually builds our knowledge and experience and enables us to gain specialist knowledge in areas of interest.

At the moment I am concentrating on doing a great job as a People Business Partner.  I have just started a secondment to one of our biggest regions (London & South East) which is offering up new and exciting challenges.  Previously I worked in our Central office as the People Business Partner for the Trust’s Support Services (IT, Finance, People, Risk, Internal Comms).  Being able to gain experience in both our Central functions and our Regional operations is a fantastic opportunity.

Who knows what will happen in the future – I’m open to any opportunities that may come my way but for now I am happy where I am.

The advice I’d give anyone considering working for the Trust is – be clear you are doing it for the right reasons – we are a very hard working and ambitious organisation and expect a lot from our staff.  We can be a large and slightly unwieldy organisation which can be frustrating at times but there is always a way through.  I would not want to work anywhere else.”