Rachel Bondi
Rachel Bondi Chief Partner Officer, Partner Solutions Group, Microsoft Australia
Jun 21,2021

How Katherine Clayton is redefining part-time work

The ability to impact outcomes for a business and its people inspired Katherine Clayton to switch from marketing to recruitment.

Driven by this urge to make a difference, she focused on creating strategies to help companies better connect with their people. From oil and gas to utilities and technology, she used her skills to implement a human-centric approach with innovation at its core.

Since moving into the technology sector as the People and Culture Lead and now Organisation Development Consultant at Insight Enterprises APA C, innovation has become a significant part of her job. “The pace, energy, and that focus on pushing the boundaries – that’s what I love about Insight.”

Katherine’s role includes all aspects of workforce planning and talent management. She works on strategic projects for the Asia-pacific team that support Insight to continue to be a Great Place to Work. One of these projects is focused on diversity and inclusion (D&I) which covers everything from how to manage bias, everyday sexism in the workplace, and building an inclusive culture where all teammates thrive and feel a sense of belonging.

She also advises on initiatives aimed at developing the company’s future leaders, ensuring career progression for all teammates, and industry relevant development. Katherine achieves all this on a part-time basis.

“It’s difficult to find impactful, strategic roles that are not full-time,” she says. “I have a four-year-old and a one-year-old. That’s a huge part of my life.”

Describing herself as someone who carries around pen and paper, Katherine was initially nervous about entering the technology industry. But focusing on her strengths helped ease the initial angst. “We all use technology now, and you can add value no matter your level of interest,” she says. “I am not a technical person, but that hasn’t stopped me from having a rewarding career in technology.”

The people-centric environment and knowledge-oriented economy was another drawcard for Katherine – unlike utilities, which was asset-centric, and oil and gas, which was resource-centric. “Brainpower, ideas and people appeal to me,” she says.

The other attribute is that the technology industry tends not to hide from challenging issues and is very much on the front foot when it comes to social issues and challenges. She enjoys being part of such a progressive industry with strong values.   

“We move with the times, and that can only be positive for women,” Katherine says. “People value that in an employer.”

Interacting at a global level and engaging with various businesses in a part-time role has made Katherine realise the significance of personal development and investment. She’s passionate that those opportunities shouldn’t be reserved for full-time employees.

“Women looking to develop their careers should not be afraid of becoming an expert,” she says. “We’re often concerned with not wanting to look bossy. But if you develop yourself, lead and work authentically, then doors will open.”

Katherine’s self-development has given her the confidence to advise senior people and influence specific outcomes. She says it’s not about putting on a show or acting like someone else, but people should invest in their skills and stay authentic.

“My advice is to learn who you are, become an expert in yourself, have a genuine desire to learn and grow, and then just show up as you,” she says.