Aspire to Tech: Chief Human Resources Officer at STEMCELL Technologies

Career Spotlight – Helen Sheridan

This week we sat down with Helen Sheridan, the Chief Human Resources Officer at STEMCELL Technologies, to get her perspective on the ecosystem as a BC Tech Board Member and her aspirations for BC’s future

Tell our readers a little about yourself – what’s your day job and what’s your role with BC Tech?  My day job is Chief Human Resources Officer at STEMCELL Technologies Inc, Canada’s largest life sciences company.  We have 1700 staff in 14 countries with over 1000 of them based in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia.   At BC Tech, I am a member of the Board of Directors.

How long have you been involved with BC Tech? I’ve been involved with BC Tech off and on since 1994 when I was the head of global Human Resources at Crystal Decisions. 

Why did you choose to get involved with BC Tech? Throughout my career in the technology industry in BC, BC Tech has been an integral leader in supporting the growth of our sector.   The staff at BC Tech have been great advocates for the issues our sector is facing at all levels of government, and have provided access to a network of talented individuals that has been invaluable.

What do you see as the single biggest challenge in the BC Tech Ecosystem today? The ability for BC-based businesses to scale up and retain Canadian ownership as well as top talent.  Too often we see success stories from BC being snapped up in acquisitions before they have a chance to build critical middle and senior management talent that can then go on to help other technology companies to scale up.

What excites you about the future of BC Tech’s ecosystem? The Biotechnology industry is scaling up again with some exciting new and existing companies, all of which are in high growth.  We are also seeing more indigenous and women led businesses which is an exciting development to improve diversity in our sector.

Why should every tech company join BC Tech? Access to a network of talented people, all of whom are willing to share their experience (for free!) and are committed to the ongoing success and growth of the technology industry in British Columbia.

What advice would you like to share with other companies out there? We have a bright and exciting future ahead of us, built on a solid foundation.  Our sector can lead the way in improving the living standards of all British Columbians as our growth and success helps the province move from a resource-based to a knowledge and innovation based economy.  Network, network, network – we have so much to learn from one another!