Kate Wood is a Customer Success Manager at Auror, serving retail partners from the Melbourne office. We talked to Kate about her career journey in store operations and loss prevention, making the switch from retail leadership to technology, and how she thinks about transferable skills.

Can you talk about your career journey and the path to Auror?

Once I finished uni, I flopped around for a bit. I had a degree in business management/HR but no idea what I really wanted to do with my life. And like most things, while I was trying to work out what to do, my career just kind of happened.

I went for a few graduate interviews for HR roles, realised they weren’t a good fit and settled into the retail world. I discovered I loved leading teams, merchandising, selling, and eventually ended as part of the leadership team in a big box retailer for 15 years.

After five years working in stores, I was approached to join the loss prevention team. This was another unplanned move – I was super passionate about reducing loss in my store and spent a great deal of time working with my team to drive better processes. After a few more years working in loss prevention roles, I was then approached to pioneer a new role internally, driving engagement through strategic campaigns and communications for loss prevention. All in all, I had over ten years working in and with loss prevention leadership. These roles gave me a unique and strategic perspective of the challenges our store teams, police, and communities face in relation to crime and safety.

I was also fortunate to do a secondment in the safety and wellbeing team where I realised how much overlap there is in the loss prevention space. Often when we talk about loss prevention, we focus on dollars and stock, but the most important asset we protect are our teams and communities.

What’s your biggest learning so far after moving into tech customer success?

When I was made redundant in my previous role, I had some time to reflect on what I wanted my next career step to look like. I was determined that my next role would align strongly with my beliefs around positive community impact and had some really clear expectations about what the culture of my new organisation would look like.

I think if I had stopped to think about Auror as a tech company (which it absolutely is) I would have been very daunted by the thought of a “career in tech.” However, my experience with  Auror in my previous role and further discussions with the Auror team showed that it heavily aligned with my core beliefs and my background actually made me a great fit.

How did you uncover your transferable skills? Do you have any tips for those who are thinking about changing industries?

Ironically, when I first started applying for roles I had a very narrow lens. I started applying for roles that matched my previous job title and didn’t actually stop to consider transferable skills. The Auror role caught my eye because of the existing relationship that I had with Auror.

When I talked through the Customer Success Manager role, I realised that my background made me uniquely suited for this role. I have spent the last 10 years working with store and loss prevention teams to drive engagement around reducing stock loss and reporting crime. Even my interview was comfortable for me and sat firmly in my wheelhouse!

The best way to start is to sit down and map out your strengths, skills, and past experience in customer or engagement roles. So many of the skill sets I learned in my past projects align perfectly with my new job, it’s just working for a different industry. Definitely think outside the box – going into a new job is like going into a relationship.

It’s important to be upfront with your skills and expectations and expect the same from your employer. If you struggle with change, new technology or feedback, a career at Auror or in customer success is probably not a good fit.

I also took the opportunity to answer any questions with honest and detailed examples from my past work places. It’s important to highlight your transferable skills to your employer when they may have also envisioned a different candidate for the role!

What’s your first impression of the culture at Auror?

After eight weeks, I am still in awe of what an amazing culture Auror has to offer. Inclusivity and collaboration is embedded in everything we do. It’s really enjoyable working with such a flat and transparent structure and it’s been exciting to be challenged every day.

It’s rare to find an organisation that walks the talk in every way.

Keen to learn more about working with Auror? View open roles.

July 20, 2023

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