Tracy Engel, 29

Assistant Director, Human Resources, NewYork-Presbyterian/Hudson Valley Hospital

Even though Tracy Engel just wrapped up her first year at NewYork-Presbyterian/Hudson Valley Hospital, she’s already gone way above and beyond simply screening résumés. She’s played an instrumental role in modernizing the hospital’s HR operations, including its payroll systems, communication plans, and new-hire orientation programs. But talent acquisition is the real bread and butter of Engel’s job. “It’s a really important function for any organization to make sure the new talent are high-quality, driven individuals who will enhance our functions,” says Engel. She’s learned that the key to identifying good talent means interviewing for behavioral fit. It’s essential to look at the full package (acquired skills, background, personality, etc.) instead of just individual segments of their résumé, she says. Engel also consults management on how to continually foster talent and keep employees engaged in the hospital’s mission to serve the community. “Those working in HR know we are sometimes the guidance counselors to our staff,” says Engel. “Especially to those working in an entry-level role.”

Wunderfacts:

• The Stonybrook University graduate previously worked at Northern Westchester Hospital for five years, where she climbed from junior generalist to HR specialist.

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• Engel’s biggest pet peeves during job interviews? Candidates who come ill-prepared. 

• Her advice to interviewees is to nail down the basics: Wear professional attire; make proper eye contact; be on time; and, of course, be polite to the receptionist. “The first impression is invaluable,” she notes. “Those first 30 seconds say a lot about who you are, so if you fail atone of these, it’s hard to recover from it.


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