Kiwi country girl, with a down to earth, customer focused approach - Story by Tony Cutting
Jade initially comes across as your typical “Kiwi country” girl, a little reserved, very friendly and down to earth. As her story unfolds you discover ‘her book’ contains a lot more inside than what the initial ‘cover’ appears to provide.
Made in the Manawatu – Playing for New Zealand
Jade was born in Palmerston North (post 1980), the product of an English dad and a Kiwi mum. Dad is a mechanic and Mum is a Tree Nursery specialist. Raised in the small town of Shannon with older and younger brothers, she attended Shannon Primary School before heading off to Horowhenua College.
Jade admits she was pretty “cruisey” at college and was not sure what she was going to do, the one thing she did love at College however was In-line Hockey, she is passionate about this game, works very hard and was rewarded through selection into her first New Zealand team in 2000.
After College she decided to attend UCOL and took courses in both Computer Administration and Tourism not absolutely sure which direction she would end up with.
It was 2004 and Jade’s In-Line Hockey career was well underway. The New Zealand team travelled to Canada for the World Championship’s ranked 13th in the world and very keen to improve on this. She had a great time and the team performed well above their ranking finishing the tournament in 6th position.
Telstra Clear– Kapiti (circa 2005)
IT was to become her pathway; however she would start her IT career as a data entry operator and backend support person (Broadband support) in Paraparaumu at the new Telstra Clear support hub established there. This role was challenging and through the support of great local mentors within the business Jade thrived in this environment which enabled her to learn as she went and develop her skills.
After two years with Telstra Clear (And a wee trial period) she successfully applied for and was appointed as a Team Manager in the Customer Support team. This team was split 50% customer support 50% internal IT Help desk for the business. Again great support from managers enabled Jade to grow in this role – and she did. The processes and skills Jade developed while at Telstra Clear would give her a good foundation to build upon.
2010 – Redundancy
Telstra Clear disestablished the Paraparaumu support centre and suddenly Jade’s world was turned around for a year. Staying on the coast she worked in retail and hospitality as she waiting for her next IT career opportunity. She then did some work for Census before a role with Snapper was secured.
Snapper is an exciting Kiwi IT company doing some great things with payment solutions within New Zealand with plans to soon expand off shore. Jade was recruited as the team lead into Snapper to help setup a new internal service centre which had been previously outsourced. Jade with the help of two other staff established and ran this operation for a year before the team was relocated to Auckland.
With the service centre based in Auckland, Jade took up a role within the internal IT, Front Desk help team and was soon appointed into her current role as an IFMS (Integrated Fare Management System) Analyst. A role she is really enjoying and adding to her already well crafted resume.
I asked Jade what is it about Snapper that makes it a great place for her to work. I immediately got the following response “No one day is the same, and the challenges of working in a fast moving technology company means you are always on your toes” “I love the fact that we are at the leading edge of the technology we are building, and that the company encourages us all to constantly up skill and evolve”.
Jade then mentions “They are an awesome group of people, they care”. “At Snapper I have some great mentors, that help me believe in myself and encourage me to learn and grow”
I asked what they are doing at Snapper to ensure they are leading edge. “We have developed a ‘sandpit’ that allows us to develop, test and play with different technology ideas before we deploy the solution” “It’s the perfect environment for us to try out all sorts of new ideas and new technologies for the business”
Outside of Snapper, Jade and her partner are doing up their recently purchased home in Raumati on the beautiful Kapiti Coast “Renovating keeps us very busy during the weekends”.
So it seems with an exciting and supportive work environment at Snapper, In-Line Hockey and new home renovations to keep her busy, she is living her own Kiwi dream. I get the feeling this well balanced lifestyle has been designed perfectly by this top performer and will lead to more brilliant chapters in a book that has many, many more pages to be written – well done Jade!