Meet the Team

Stephen Craven

Managing Director/CEO

Steve joined SES in 2001 as an Employment Advisor, based in Brisbane.  In 2003 he was promoted to Team Leader and grew the Brisbane area to include Ipswich.  In 2005 Steve became Area Manager of Brisbane, Newcastle, Ipswich and the Sunshine Coast offices.  In 2006 he was offered the Operations Manger position and later became the General Manager.   Now holding the title of Managing Director and CEO Steve is responsible for the day to day management of the company.  Having spent 20 years of his life dedicated to the apprenticeship industry and not looking to retire for at least another 10 years, Steve retains a lot of knowledge of the early years of Group Training and the history behind SES.  He looks forward to welcoming all new SES apprentices and Trainees on their chosen career path.

Philip Neale

Chief Financial Officer

MIPA AFA MACS CP CMgr FIML MBA, Grad Dip Strategic Leadership, Adv Dip Acc, Adv Dip Bus, Adv Dip Mgmt, Adv Dip Comp Sys Tech, Adv Dip IT, TAELLN.

Director of Synergy Group, a disability employer that specialises in organic food packaging.

Experienced CFO, CIO and Co Sec. Skilled in Business Planning, Statutory and Corporate Governance, Acquisitions, Tenders, Accounting, Financial Reporting, Variance Analysis, Business Application Integration and Risk Management. Strong finance and IT professional.

Phil, our Financial Controller, at work

Tracy Craven

Operations Manager

My name is Tracy and I am the Senior Employment Officer at Smart Employment Solutions.  I have been part of the team since 2008.  To have the ability of giving people the opportunity to start their career in the trades and change their lives gives me so much satisfaction.  Employing and mentoring a 1st year apprentice over 4 years, watching them grow and develop new skills through to their completion is why I do what I do.  I am proud to be a part of the Smart Employment Solutions team and skilling Queensland’s future.

Adam Humeniuk

Employment Officer

Adam is a Cabinet Maker by trade and completed his apprenticeship through a Group Training Organisation, so he can relate to what a Group Training apprentice can go through during their apprenticeship. Adam is an Employment Officer and has been part of the team since 2019.

“It is a rewarding feeling helping young people get into an apprenticeship, seeing how excited our apprentices get when they get their dream job is why I love doing what I do.”

Natalie Finemore

Employment Officer

Hi my name is Natalie Finemore and I joined the team at Smart Employment Solutions in June 2021 as an Employment Officer.

I am a qualified Hairdresser by trade. I completed an apprenticeship and went on to start my own salon at the age of 20 years old, competing in and winning several Hair Competitions in NZ and working with some of the top NZ hairdressers.

Once returning back home to my native Australia in 2013, I have worked in several companies ranging from finance roles to customer service roles.

I am very passionate about apprenticeships and helping people of all ages achieve their qualifications and providing support from start to finish.  I look forward to seeing all the apprentices and trainees that I employ, go onto become qualified tradespeople.

Mick Nielsen

Employment Officer

My Name is Mick Nielsen and I’m an Employment Officer at Smart Employment Solutions, joining the team in 2020, though I have been working in the Group Training industry since 2018. I am a qualified Carpenter and enjoyed my days on the tools building peoples dreams. I also trained a lot of apprentices over the 30 years whilst I was in the construction industry. I really enjoy helping people of all ages become apprentices, being able to help guide them through their chosen vocation that they are so passionate about. I also get great satisfaction from seeing the change in the person that walks in the door, to the one that walks out a tradesperson.

Shelly Currie

Employment Officer

Hi! My name is Shelly Currie and I joined Smart Employment Solutions as an Employment Officer in November 2021. I am based at Smart Employment Solutions new office in Beaudesert and look forward to working across the Scenic Rim and Surrounding areas.

I have over 23 years’ experience working within the Employment realm from being the Industry Liaison Officer/Indigenous Education Support Officer with Education Queensland for 10 years before moving on to work with Mission Australia Job Network for 10 years and most recently Interact Disability Employment Services for 3.5years. I have built an amazing network of contacts and have gained so much valuable knowledge in the industry.

I am passionate about helping others and making a positive difference to people’s lives and am excited to be working with young apprentices and trainees and look forward to watching them grow, develop and achieve great success throughout their training.

I also enjoy engaging with and interacting with employers and helping to recruit the right people for their teams.

I am looking forward to the challenge and can’t wait to see my apprentices succeed.

Kim Howard

Care Officer/Admin

Hey, I’m Kim!  I’m the Care Officer here at Smart Employment Solutions.  I started off as a School Based Business Administration Trainee in 2011.  After completing my Certificate II and III with Smart Employment Solutions I was employed full time as an Admin & Finance Officer.  This also included working with the Payroll team.

My role now as a Care Officer, involves managing the Electrical apprentices and providing support throughout their apprenticeship.

I enjoy visiting our apprentices out on site and seeing them in the workplace learning and developing new skills.

Kim - an employment officer

Lauren Matheson

Care Officer/Admin

Hello, my name is Lauren and I started my career with Smart Employment Solutions in July 2021 as a Care Officer. Previously I worked in a Law Firm as a Legal Assistant where I obtained my Certificate 3 in Business Administration (Legal). Before working in the Law Firm, I worked on a dairy farm where I completed my Certificate 3 in Agriculture and went on to win Trainee of the Year for South East Queensland.

My role as a Care Officer is helping apprentices throughout the term of their apprenticeship by guiding them in the right direction and providing support where possible.  I look forward to watching our apprentice’s transition to become qualified tradespeople.

Natasha Bush

Office Manager

Tash commenced with SES in 2007 joining the Client Consultant team in her first ever administration role, eventually cross training with the Finance & Payroll team to become a Finance & Administration Officer.  Having completed a dual Diploma of Business & Diploma of Management she became the Senior Finance & Admin Officer, and is now Office Manager.

Anne Smith

Admin Officer

My name is Anne Smith and I joined the team at Smart Employment Solutions in 2020.  I have been working in the GTO sector since 2003.  My current role with SES is working all areas within Admin, which is a big change from my last job.  You are never too old to learn new processes.  I’m really happy working with the Smart team as it is a friendly family type of environment and look forward to the new challenges coming my way.

Jaime Kirkham

Admin Officer

Jaime commenced with Smart Employment Solutions in late 2021 as a Finance and Administration Officer.

She moved to Australia 6 years ago from New Zealand with her husband and two young children.

She has an extensive administration and marketing background and has completed a Level 4 Certificate in Front Line Management as well as a Diploma in Travel & Tourism.

Jaime enjoys learning about the Group Training Industry and watching the apprentice’s develop and grow.

Brittney Byrne

Admin Officer

Hi, my name is Brittney. I started working for Smart Employment Solutions in 2018 as a Trainee, completing my Cert III in Business. Previously I worked as a Disability Support Professional for 4 years. I joined SES again in 2022 as a Part Time Finance and Admin Officer. I’m excited to be back, working with such a great team.

Kanako Eekhoff

Business Admin Trainee

Hello, my name is Kanako, I commenced my Certificate III in Business with Smart Employment Solutions in November 2021.  Previously I worked in the fast food industry for 3 years where I obtained my Certificate III in Hospitality. My role at Smart Employment Solutions is working within admin and payroll. I’m really happy to be working with the Smart Employment team as it is a very friendly environment. I look forward to completing my Certificate III in Business.

Wesley Neale

Finance Assistant

I am Wesley Neale, and I’m thrilled with my role in this company. Being a finance assistant allows me to take on tasks in the service of my colleagues, and through that the team dynamic really shines. This position is all about helping my peers, it’s right there in the name.

I graduated from QUT with a BFA (Creative Writing) – Distinction. During my studies, I learned the power of language, and how to manipulate it to convey mood. This had the auxiliary benefit of increasing my communication skills, which aids in any and all discussions with colleagues – be it financial planning or problem-solving when discrepancies or other such complications arise.

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