TRAINEE STAFF: Shontel Kendall, Bethany Osborn, Craig Dunkley, Haylee Philippi, Ryan Schiffke, Tiah-Sheree Vo and The Waves' Tanya McCombe. The Waves are a finalist in the Employer of the Year awards. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail
TRAINEE STAFF: Shontel Kendall, Bethany Osborn, Craig Dunkley, Haylee Philippi, Ryan Schiffke, Tiah-Sheree Vo and The Waves' Tanya McCombe. The Waves are a finalist in the Employer of the Year awards. Photo: Mike Knott / NewsMail Mike Knott

On a wave of success

THE Waves Sports Club is a finalist in the Queensland Government's Employer of the Year awards.

Human resources manager for the club Tanya McCombe said it was "really exciting".

"This is the second year we've nominated (for the award)," Ms McCombe said.

"And last year we were unfortunate (and didn't) take the gong.

"We made the top three but missed out to Hind Timber."

But Ms McCombe said that only inspired The Waves to focus harder on the training it was currently providing.

"And looking at a different approach to our training and our development for our staff," she said.

Ms McCombe said that had clearly paid off.

"We were (this year) lucky enough to go through the process and have an interview and be awarded the finalist, it was very exciting for us," she said.

"It just showed that all the hard work and effort that's been put into training and development from the general manager through to our supervisors through to our line staff has certainly paid off."

In the breakdown of why The Waves made it to a finalist, the judges noted how, over the past ten years the club successfully helped 90 trainees and apprentices earn their qualifications and in 2015, 10 school- based trainees joined the team.

"Training is encouraged to build multi-skilled employees who can experience career growth within the business," the judges noted.

Ms McCombe felt the diversity in their training and development at The Waves had set them apart.

"I guess for us it's about diversity, training and development it isn't about going off and getting a qualification necessarily.

"It's about capturing the qualifications but then homing in on specific skill sets, specific knowledge requirement and specific experience," she said.

"But not only that it's also about developing that morale and the culture and all of those substances that support the training and development," she said. Ms McCombe said training was something The Waves was very committed to.

"This will be our forth or fifth year with the school based traineeship program," she said.

"Each year it gets larger in terms of volume of trainees that we take on board, but it's something that we're very passionate about." She said the program was also a boost for Bundaberg employment.

"Given that youth unemployment in Bundaberg is quite high, we're hoping to influence and develop the school based trainees whether it's remaining with us as an employer or moving onto the next employer," she said.

"To be able to walk in there and adapt to the work environment and be the best employee they could possibly be." Ms McCombe said it was extremely important employees were multiskilled.

"What that means for us is ensuring all our staff are cross trained in the areas of our business," she said.

"We are a total entertainment provider for our customer so it's really important for us to ensure that our staff can deliver services across all areas of our business.

"Now what that does for us is allows us flexibility for rosters and operational opportunities but it also develops the trainees and gives them variety as well."

She said staff may work in the clubs coffee shop one week and its gaming room the next.

"Our staff might work in the coffee shop one week and then be able to help us out in the gaming room the follow week," she said.

"That gives them variety and keeps their skill level up," she said.

"That makes them a more valuable employee whether it's with us or another hospitality industry," she said.

The Employer of the Year will be announced at an awards ceremony in Brisbane on August 1.



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