We spoke with Louise to discover how she's got to where she is today from originally joining us on a graduate scheme, progressing within multiple teams around BT, to now working in our Corporate Affairs team.

Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Louise Hilliard and I am the Schools Programme Manager in the Digital Impact and Sustainability Team in Corporate Units. I manage the Barefoot computing programme for BT in partnership with BCS, The Institute of IT. Barefoot provides teacher workshops through trained volunteers (many of whom are from BT) and quality lessons to help primary school teachers in the UK to deliver the computing curriculum brilliantly. Helping teachers and children to make the most of life in the digital world.

What did you do before joining BT and/or the Corporate Affairs team?

I joined BT on the graduate scheme 16 years ago and since then have worked in what are now Consumer, Enterprise and Openreach within the Business Improvement, Project Management and Communications job roles. I helped to launch some of our key products and our Natural Language interactive voice response (IVR). I’ve also set up new centres of excellence in our call centres and I was the communications manager to the CEO for all the engineers in Openreach, so it has been a very varied career so far!

How did you decide on a career in Corporate Affairs?

My old role was disbanded, and I heard of the schools role being advertised so I went for it. I had had my eye on joining this team for a long time as I sat on the same floor in BT Centre and liked what I saw. This was my perfect opportunity to give it a go! It was advertised as a full-time role and I work four days so I was hesitant at first, but my manager at the time encouraged me to try anyway and it turns out I was a perfect fit!

Tell us a fun fact about yourself

I’m a twin and my sister is a deputy head in a school which has come in handy during this role for testing and understanding the way the teaching world works.

Has the pandemic affected your role/workload?

Yes, we had to pivot our deliverables completely to help schools with online learning instead of classroom lessons and changed all our teacher workshops from face to face to online experiences. We ended up providing over 50 activities to help teachers and parents during lockdown and easing back into school.

What’s the best project you’ve worked on?

Barefoot, without a doubt! I also enjoyed managing the first full roadshow with huge shows across the country for Service Delivery in Openreach. 

What are your ambitions and passions for your career?

To continue to learn and grow in the impact and sustainability world – moving across our human rights, responsible tech, and environment programmes to continue to feel that I’m making a difference when I go to work.

What would you say to someone considering a career in Corporate Affairs?

It’s a great team, with really varied opportunities and an insight into what’s happening across the rest of the business. If you’re passionate about helping the business, its customers and society to get ahead, this is the place for you.

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