Case Studies


As working years now span from late teens to beyond 70 years, HR professionals are reinventing recruitment and training practices to accommodate the opportunities and challenges a multi-generational workforce brings to a business.

Read more


This year marks the original deadline for the ‘Closing the Gap’ initiative that, among other objectives, sought to halve the employment gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. 

Read more


Successful HR looks different in each industry and organisation. But as these award finalists prove, there are ideas that can work across the profession.

Read more

Dave Ulrich HR Leader Award

Sponsored by  Human Synergistics logo

Cassandra Hatton

Cassandra Hatton is a professional and passionate leader. In her current role as General Manager Human Resources with the charity St Vincent de Paul Society Victoria, she forms part of the executive team and provides leadership and oversight to the human resources, learning and development, WHS, wellbeing, volunteers and culture functions.

Having progressed from HR Officer to GM HR and Acting CEO in a little over a decade, Cassandra’s achievement and impact is noteworthy.

Read More

Elizabeth Hardaker

Elizabeth Hardaker is an inspirational HR leader who is in high demand as she continues to excel and deliver sound strategic initiatives at leading Australian agribusiness Ruralco, changing the way an industry utilises the HR function.

Challenging the status quo, Elizabeth is also paving the way for women in agriculture to have a strong presence and representation in the industry, providing the key supporting foundations to make this happen.

Read More

Fiona Crawford

Fiona Crawford is an Olympic medallist who has cultivated an unrivalled high-performance culture as General Manager, Human Resources, at one of Australia’s fastest growing technology companies, InfoTrack.

Fiona has claimed her spot in the C-suite as an integral and strategic member of the executive team by consistently delivering initiatives that drive business strategy and result in high employee engagement, advocacy and business improvements.

Read More

Jodie Haydon

As General Manager Human Resources at Viva Energy, Jodie Haydon is a direct report to the CEO of the fuels and lubricants  manufacturer and distributor. 

Jodie joined the executive team in 2014, helping to lead large parts of the change as the company transitioned from being part of a global multinational, to a standalone Australian company. With Viva now embarking on a growth phase, Jodie is involved in developing the overall company business strategy and the people strategy.

Read More

Liam Hayes

Chief People Officer at engineering and infrastructure advisory company Aurecon, Liam Hayes is part of their global CEO’s Future-Ready team, which puts people at the apex of its transformational business model.

Liam's focus on human-centric leadership and collaborative culture saw him named one of the AFR BOSS Magazine's six ‘Young Executives of the Year’ in 2017.

Read More

Rodney Francisco

Very rarely do you come across an HR leader who has a passion and drive for what they do, where they work, their industry and most importantly about the talent – attracting it, connecting it, growing it, and inspiring it.

Rod Francisco is one of those rare HR leaders who has built his reputation for human resources and leadership excellence on the back of his genuine desire to see people succeed.

Read More

Dave Ulrich HR Practitioner Award

Sponsored by  Human Synergistics logo

Alicia Thomas

Over five years Alicia Thomas has worked her way up from an HR graduate position at Mercy Health to her current role of Organisational Development & Diversity Manager, reporting directly to the Group Executive Director People, Learning & Culture.

In particular, Alicia has successfully broadened the scope of Mercy Health’s diversity and inclusion agenda by introducing a range of positive initiatives for the staff of almost 9,000.

Read More

Marianne Passafaro

Since joining hipages in February 2016 as a People & Culture Business Partner, Marianne Passafaro has already received two promotions in recognition of her contributions and increased responsibilities. Marianne went from never managing to leading a team of five and taking on ownership of hipages’ Manila people and culture operations.

Marianne epitomises high potential talent and elevates the HR profession with her consummate professionalism, creative approach, dedication to leadership and by delivering superior value and results to the business.

Read More

Renee Alexander

Renee Alexander joined the Northern Territory Public Sector in 2006 and currently works at the Top End Health Service (TEHS), part of NT Health. She is completing her capstone project for the AHRI Practising Certification Program (APC) to qualify her as a Certified HR Practitioner.

Renee is managing a large scale culture change program for TEHS and has served for two years on the AHRI NT State Council, recently being elected VP Certification.

Read More

Dave Ulrich HR Rising Star Award

Sponsored by  Human Synergistics logo

Farzana Khan

In her role as Fink Group’s one-person HR team, Farzana Khan develops, maintains and improves the hospitality organisation's human resources by planning, implementing and evaluating employee relations and HR policies, programs, and practices. 

Farzana’s management style is approachable, with well-developed communication skills, a positive 'can do' attitude, strong attention to detail and the ability to use her initiative, learn quickly and take ownership.

Read More

Monique Davidge

As the HR Generalist at Obela Fresh Dips and Spreads, Monique Davidge has brought structure and increased professionalism to the HR function including recruitment, selection and on-boarding.

Some of her key achievements during her time with Obela include needs identification and capability building across various functions, driving the health and wellbeing program and initiating the application for and achieving status as an EOC with the Australian Business Awards.

Read More

Lynda Gratton CEO Award

Corinne Bot

Twenty-three years ago Corrine Bot founded the Polyglot Group, a boutique consultancy with a mission to simplify business growth and expansion worldwide.

Corinne’s goal has always been to raise people up and help them grow. Her determination to make Polyglot Group a great place to work was recognised when they were awarded the Employer of Choice Award at the 2017 NSW Business Awards.

Read More

Daniel Findley

With more than 25 years leading performance and outcome-based not-for-profit organisations and driving growth as a CEO and board director, Masonic Care Tasmania's Daniel Findley has built a reputation for repeated success in organisational consolidations and turnarounds.

Daniel improves profitability, diversifies revenue streams, creates value-added programs, and increases visibility and reputations. He is frequently recognised for developing creative programs to serve multiple populations and client groups and providing unwavering commitment to the organisations and communities he works with.

Read More

Naomi Wilson

Naomi Wilson has practised in Human Resources since 2001, across all business sectors and a wide range of industries. In 2011 she founded Focus HR, and has grown the business from a part-time sole operator to a team of experienced professionals she leads today.

Naomi's vision for Focus HR is to make the exceptional attainable for all businesses. Starting with HR, the passion and excellence of her consultancy has expanded to WHS, strategy and execution, and team/leadership development.

Read More

Ram Charan Student Award

Amelia Gal

Amelia Gal's studies have given her the opportunity to appreciate human resources from several different viewpoints.

She believes the changing shape of the workforce makes it one of the most exciting times to enter into the field, and sees human resource professionals as being the obvious change leader during these times.

During her career, Amelia hopes to foster an environment of creativity, innovation and continuous learning, to benefit  employees and meet strategic goals of organisations.

Read More

Brandon West

Brandon West strongly believes that the greatest asset an organisation can have is its people. With such a precious resource, Brandon is committed to learning so that he can cultivate and manage workplace talent in his future roles. This is demonstrated through Brandon’s continuing studies and various extra-curricular activities, including three successfully completed internships. Hoping to develop a career in both human resources and employee relations, Brandon is a strong advocate for minority rights, including LGBTI rights, as everyone deserves to feel welcomed at work.

Read More

Mitchell Rickman

Over the past three years studying Human Resource Management, Mitchell Rickman has developed the belief that an organisation’s most valuable asset is its people. Upon finishing his studies, Mitchell aims to contribute to an innovative and diverse workforce that provides opportunities for both individual and organisational success, through the use of both strategic and sustainable HR practice. Mitchell has plans to do further study in psychology, while working in HR.

Read More

Ram Charan AHRI Practising Certification Award

Carina Konza

Carina Konza expertly translates big picture thinking into practical implementation for Australian Public Service agencies. She is driven by a desire to affect change and use innovative HR solutions to improve citizen experience of government services.

Currently working in the Treasury, Carina leads a team improving organisational effectiveness by developing and applying workforce strategies informed by workforce analytics.

Carina’s strong HR knowledge and skills are supported by her AHRI Practising Certification, degree in business administration and project management certificates.

Read More

Ebohr Figueroa

Ebohr Figueroa has chosen the sometimes bumpy terrain of conflict as his professional field for over 15 years, with a current focus on workplace conflict resolution through consulting work in workplace wellbeing and mental health.

His AHRI HR studies have followed on from his interest in how organisational culture can support workplaces which promote conversations that build common ground and effective resolution of conflict.

Ebohr has previously worked in family dispute resolution and facilitation of family business succession planning.

Read More

Maureen Gerlach

Following an extensive and varied career in human resource management in the disability sector, Maureen Gerlach joined the Shire of Mundaring in 2008.

In her current role, Maureen is responsible for leading a small team of HR professionals delivering a range of policy, advisory and organisational development services and programs designed to build capability and foster a culture that supports service excellence.

Maureen’s key achievements include development of a strategic workforce plan, culture framework and leadership capability framework.

Read More