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Why choose a job when you can design a career?

By Jessica Rauschenberg | October 19, 2017 | 5 min read | Life at Blue Cross NC

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Searching for your first job out of school can be both exciting and daunting. For many, it can feel like going from a world of endless possibilities to getting pigeon-holed into a career before you’re even sure if it’s the right one for you.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could sample a few professional roles before deciding what career path to take? As it turns out, you can do that. Rotational programs are a great way to try your hand at several professional roles before settling on one that truly interests you.

At Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC), our Rotational Development Program (RDP) allows talented college grads with various backgrounds the opportunity to explore and work in different areas of the company over 24 months. During this time, employees in the program design their own unique work experiences by picking three rotations of about 7 months each – and any area of the company is fair game for a rotation.

“The program has a reputation that is respected throughout the company. I’ve initiated meetings with many of our leaders, been tapped for special volunteer opportunities, and contributed to enterprise-wide projects. RDP Associates are trusted to deliver excellent work!”

How it Works

The idea is that RDP Associates take ownership of their careers and get to know Blue Cross NC as a whole while they get to know their own interests better, too. As RDP Associates spend time with each team, they bring fresh curiosity and perspectives and are encouraged to take on challenging work, spend time building relationships, and grow cross-functional business skills. Our RDP Associates aren’t given busy-work or projects; they are full partners on their teams.

Along the way, RDP Associates are supported by various development activities and a network of leaders, peers and alumni of the program conspiring for each other’s personal and professional success. Oh yeah, the group knows how to have a good time, too – you can always find them sharing a laugh while volunteering in the community, hanging out at lunch or supporting a company event.

Each summer since 2013, the RDP has hired five recent college grads to join the program. Meet one of our current RDP Associates and one of our RDP Alumni:

Johnson Beasley

Johnson Beasley is an RDP Associate, about to start his third and final rotation. He grew up in Raleigh and studied Health Policy and Management at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH). Johnson entered college thinking about becoming a doctor, but his eyes were opened to other opportunities in the healthcare landscape while he was studying public health. His stint in our Rotational Development Program has been an ideal way to explore career possibilities. 

“A great thing about my experience is that it has been very self-directed. While we have incredible support from our Program Manager, we’re empowered to the make the program what we want it to be.”

Rotation 1: Johnson started working with the Provider Information Integrity and Directory team in Operations where he learned about the importance of making sure updated and accurate provider information is available to our members.

Rotation 2: Johnson then shifted to the State Health Plan Client team in our Sales and Marketing division. He was there at an exciting time and was able to assist the Client Manager for the North Carolina State Health Plan as the team worked together to ultimately land the contract.

Rotation 3: Johnson will begin his third rotation at the end of October. He’s working with the team leaders to design his responsibilities and he is excited to get experience in our Healthcare division.

Art Hailey

Art Hailey is alumni of the Rotational Development Program and is now working as an Information Security Analyst Associate at Blue Cross NC. He’s a native of Greensboro with a BA in Exercise and Sports Science from UNC-CH and an MA in Management from Wake Forest. Coming out of school, Art was unsure whether he would end up with a career in sales, marketing or finance, and he credits his RDP rotations for helping him focus his passion.

“I got to come in, pick my own rotations and through this experience understand what I wanted to do. It’s been a fail-safe method and a good transition from college to a working career.”

Rotation 1: Art started in talent acquisition and compensation in our Human Resources division where he learned about hiring practices and helped Blue Cross NC bring in talent on the employer side of the application process – a unique switch after just going through the recruitment process as an applicant.

Rotation 2: Art then rotated to Enterprise Security in IT where he coordinated efforts related to the company’s Internet security. Much of this work helped him to better understand how we protect employee and member data.

Rotation 3: In his final rotation, Art worked in Sales and connected directly with North Carolinians during open enrollment on a daily basis – he traveled to the coast with the mobile unit to help people with their health insurance questions and needs.

Art attributes his success and confidence in his role today to the different experiences he had during the program and the strong relationships he built along the way. He continues to pay it forward and leverage his skills as the chair of the Blue Cross NC Young Professionals Employee Network and volunteering with previous teams.

Learn More and Apply

This year, the Rotational Development Program at Blue Cross NC is celebrating its fifth year of hiring talented college graduates to fill unique positions where they are empowered to design their own rewarding career, one rotation at a time.

Read about the program, find out what the RDP looks for in a candidate.