Tim Scott: BA (Hons) Philosophy

Tim graduated in 1997. he is currently Head of People & Organisational Development, Brook

What does your job involve?

“People & OD” is really what most people recognise as Human Resources or HR, so in other words I am the head of the HR team. My organisation, Brook, provides free and confidential sexual health and wellbeing services to over 275,000 young people UK-wide each year. We employ about 550 people and the HR team is responsible for all advising on aspects of their employment – including recruitment, induction and ongoing learning. We work closely with managers dealing with people issues – good and bad – and also develop the organisation’s people management approach.

How did your course prepare you for your job?

With a degree like Philosophy the link between the subject and a career is not necessarily immediately obvious, but I always say it prepared me well because there are no “right” answers in either Philosophy or HR! I think – more seriously – that studying Philosophy encourages critical thinking and develops the ability to construct (and use) an argument, both of which are essential in any number of careers and certainly in my line of work.

What are your top tips for students wanting to work in your field?

1. Be interested in people - HR should ultimately aim to help people give their best at work and enjoy their jobs. It’s all too easy to get hung up on process.

2. There is masses of information and opinion out there but I get a lot of value from Twitter as there is a significant international HR community using it for sharing, networking and connecting.

3. Join the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD) – the professional body for HR – and consider studying for one of their qualifications if you decide HR is for you. There are local Branches across the country which can also expand your all-important personal network.

What was your best experience of studying at Liverpool?

I loved being an undergraduate student and had a great three years – so great that I’ve never actually left the city as it felt so much like home! If you pushed me, I’d say the best experience was writing my dissertation as I got the freedom to research and bury myself in a topic that fascinates me to this day – music. Having the opportunity to think about it and study it from a Philosophy/Aesthetics angle was brilliant, especially with the support I had from the Philosophy Department. It’s still something I look back on proudly, even all these years later!