From Political Science to HR: Ana’s Journey  

Oct 2, 2023 4 min

When you think of a talent acquisition specialist in the tech industry, you might picture someone with a background in computer science or human resources right from the start. But Ana, a Talent Acquisition Specialist at RELEX, has a story that defies expectations. Her journey into HR was not a deliberate plan but rather a serendipitous adventure that has shaped her into the professional she is today.

Uncharted Beginnings 

In the summer of 2016, Ana ventured into the world of Human Resources, initially uncertain about the path ahead. She joined an HR consultancy specializing in IT and Telecom recruitment, taking a leap of faith. 

As a surprising twist, Ana’s academic background is quite different from HR. She initially pursued a degree in Political Science and International Relations, dreaming of a diplomatic career. Fate had other plans, and after an internship in that field, Ana decided to explore new possibilities. Her journey led her to Human Resource Management, where she discovered a newfound passion for the complexities and dynamics of HR. 

For six years, Ana delved deep into tech recruitment for several leading Portuguese and international companies. She also ventured into business development, understanding market trends, compensation structures, roles, and their demands. What began as a leap of faith transformed into a fulfilling career marked by constant growth. 

“Contrary to what you might think, my trajectory in HR was not intentional or love at first sight,” Ana confesses.”

A Day in the Life 

Ana’s typical workday as a talent acquisition specialist in the tech industry is as dynamic as it gets. Her role involves identifying the right candidates across various countries where RELEX’s tech teams are based, including Finland, Portugal, and the UK. She’s also actively engaged in local employee engagement initiatives at the Lisbon Office, where she’s based. This includes planning team events, fostering cross-team knowledge sharing, and creating a positive work environment. 

In addition to her recruitment responsibilities, Ana plays a crucial role in shaping the company’s local employer branding efforts. In an international context, establishing a strong employer brand becomes even more vital. 

Tech Challenges and Solutions 

Recruiting in the tech industry presents its unique set of challenges. According to Ana, one of the most pressing issues is the highly competitive market for specialized skills. Attracting and retaining top talent goes beyond offering an attractive salary package. It requires companies to create an appealing and differentiating value proposition. This was one of the driving factors behind RELEX’s Employer Value Proposition (EVP), launched last year to transparently communicate who they are as an employer and what they expect from their employees. 

Another challenge is the rapid evolution of technology. The tech landscape changes swiftly, demanding recruiters to be agile and creative in addressing these evolving challenges. 

Attracting the Best 

To attract the best tech talent, Ana and her team at RELEX have a few tricks up their sleeves: 

  • Transparency: They’re open about the company’s culture and challenges, building trust from the start. 
  • Personalization: They listen to candidates’ goals and align opportunities with their aspirations. 
  • Rewards: Competitive compensation and benefits show appreciation for the team’s skills and contributions. 
  • Growth Opportunities: RELEX invests in ongoing learning and provides internal job opportunities, demonstrating a path to continuous growth. 
  • Purpose: Their commitment to a sustainable future resonates with candidates who want to make a positive impact. 
  • Innovation: Staying up to date with tech trends showcases a commitment to innovation. 

Skills for Success 

Being a Talent Acquisition Specialist in the tech industry demands adaptability, effective communication, and a deep understanding of both the company’s needs and the candidate landscape. It’s a role that directly contributes to shaping RELEX’s success by bringing in exceptional talent. 

Staying Ahead 

In the ever-evolving tech industry, staying up to date is essential. Ana emphasizes the need for an open mind, adaptability, a flexible mindset, and a willingness to learn from new experiences. Collaboration is key to developing HR initiatives that support the company’s objectives. 

Life Beyond Work 

Outside of work, Ana is a beach lover who finds solace by the sea. She’s an avid traveler, a culinary enthusiast, and a self-proclaimed “series marathoner.” Her diverse interests also include documentaries, tennis Grand Slams, and Shark Week. 

Balancing Act 

Work-life balance is crucial to Ana, and she found it at RELEX. The company promotes a human-centered management approach that contributes to a fulfilling and productive work environment. Open conversations about workload and deadlines, flexible hours, and prioritizing personal well-being and family life are key strategies to maintain that balance. 

Words of Wisdom 

For those considering a career in talent acquisition in the tech industry, Ana advises embracing resilience, staying proactive, and continuously updating skills and knowledge. In the fast-paced tech world, curiosity is your ally. 

Favorite RELEX Value 

Among RELEX’s core values, Ana resonates most with “Stop Doing Stupid Things.” To her, it’s about promoting critical thinking, encouraging questions like “why” and “what if,” and fostering continuous improvement. 

Ana’s story is a testament to the unexpected beauty of life’s twists and turns. Her journey from political science to tech talent acquisition is a reminder that the path to a fulfilling career can be as unpredictable as it is rewarding. It’s a story of resilience, adaptability, and the joy of discovering one’s true calling.