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> Monday, November 28th, 2011 > News > Distinguished Grad Profile: Jane Gershon
Distinguished Grad Profile: Jane Gershon
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Published: Monday, November 28th, 2011
Business Purchasing: Real life cases lead to successful Rogers employment
"ATTENTION STUDENTS: HOW WOULD YOU LIKE TO GET PAID TO SPEND $1 MILLION?"
That's the attention-grabbing phrase that caught the eye of Business Purchasing graduate Jane Gershon.
Business Purchasing is a program that prepares students for the enticing career of procurement. Procurement is the overseeing of cutting costs for a company in terms of internal and external purchasing, from small things like pens and paper to larger demands like company vehicles.
Gershon was just a green freshman when she had classes with two professors, Daphne Sanders and Neil Bishop, who inspired her and taught her the value of a business diploma at Fanshawe College. "Those two professors were the key in me wanting to stick to procurement," Gershon said.
"They taught me real-life examples with the business cases studied in class, and we acted out what it would be like in the real world. Professor Sanders recommended that I join PMAC (Purchasing Management Association of Canada), and that's where it began."
She added she also drew inspiration from her boyfriend. "He told me to go for it, and pushed me." Gershon admitted that it wasn't a quick and easy path to find her career, but a successful job shadowing opportunity was helpful in developing her resume to make it stand out.
"I jumped around a lot. I started as a purchasing assistant, then moved up to a buyer position, and that lead to category management in the private sector. Afterward, I was hired in category management in the public sector, then finally my present position as Sourcing Intelligence Lead at Rogers Television."
"Working at Rogers is great," she said. "I never have to do the same job twice, which is also an efficiency skill in procurement and a quality taught by my professors at Fanshawe."
Gershon's greatest advice to students in the Business Purchasing program – or any college student, for that matter – would be to not be intimidated by the job description. "Don't let it scare you. I didn't have a university degree or as much experience as they wanted, but I tailored my resume specifically". She also suggests to use key words in the resume, such as 'researched' or 'analyzed,' if that's what the job requires. This will show the company what you have done previously.
Also, she admitted that's what many people don't realize: many companies use computers to weed out the stronger candidates. The computers often take the key phrases from resumes that match the job description they advertise. After the computer has scanned the resume, human tasking takes over. "So don't use the same resume over and over," she added. "Make an effort to modify your resume with each job."
Gershon also suggested to be confident and negotiate your salary. Procurement in business is about negotiating, so this is also a great way to show the employer how well you can show off your skills assertively and professionally.
Once you receive an offer, never just accept what you receive. Negotiate the salary, terms of the job, vacation times and so on."