Lena H. Nghiem

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Lena H. Nghiem

Hello! I’m Lena. Welcome to my writing website and higher calling—to carry the message of hope, healing, and recovery. I was a depressed, lost soul, and through the help of others, I found a new model of living that has profoundly changed my life for the better. I am indebted to those who guided me and were driven to pay it forward. The purpose of this space is to encourage others to look within, to help those suffering from loneliness, restlessness, and discontent, and to aid those struggling with anxiety, anger, fear, depression, addiction, trauma, mental illness, and suicidal ideation. I believe that when we honestly look at our behaviors, thoughts, feelings, and belief systems—and work with them—we can alleviate the causes of our suffering and bring joy and happiness.


My Professional Life Then and Now

I was reminiscing about my life before I hit rock bottom. I don’t mind discussing what makes me who I am and what shapes me from the past, affecting my present and potential growth future. It’s no secret how much I love what I used to do professionally as an HR professional with more than 15+ years of experience in Human Resources, specializing in HR Benefits and significant contributions as a leader. I am well-positioned to make a company grow. During my time off, I learned much about myself and what I could do again to apply to the actual work at a company. I FOUND AN OUTLET when I was recovering from my erratic mental state. It’s writing. I’ve been unwell for a long time and learned to make lifestyle changes, make decisions, and love myself to let myself heal from within. I learned to manage my bipolar and channel the mania energy towards something positive and beneficial health-wise.


Down the journey, I unexpectedly became an Author. I wrote seven autobiographical books and designed and built my author’s website. This was my most recent incredible achievement. I self-published one book and decided to continue writing more, but it is not for sale. I’m not into making money at this point. All I want is to hope to reach any readers who need to read to know they are not alone. My books are available to read free online on this website. I accomplished writing seven books, and along the way, I learned new skills: written language skills, grammar skills, technical writing skills, editing skills, analytics software, monitoring software, content management software, word processing software, creativity, time management, and organization, conducting research, adherence to SEO. The essential skill required for building my author’s website was to create a templatized and scalable approach to landing page design using all my content.


That said, let’s rewind and replay an old memory. I worked eight years with my last employer as their HR Director of Benefits Administration. I want to discuss the big elephant in the room that should be addressed, but it was long forgotten. It was so wild thinking; I brought it up because I kept asking myself. WTF happened? This was what happened. I remember the last meeting with the Partners at the office. Everyone wanted to help, but the pain in my speech transfixed me. I couldn’t talk because I did not know I had suffered from a well-contained panic attack right then and there as everything unfolded. It was an awkward scary moment for me. I was trying to understand what was wrong with me while trying to communicate with them. It was seriously not an act. I refused to talk more and insisted on ending the meeting, fighting in my head and physically trying to overcome the feeling of being paralyzed, so I kept working, not knowing how severely sick I was, disregarding taking FMLA leave. I refused. On the final doom’s day, I passed out. The doctor forced me to take a break because I hit my breaking point, so I had to quit my job. I was at the peak of my career, but instead of dealing with job burnout, I needed to care for four children in three schools and work on my mental health issues. I had no clue what was driving me psychotic and unable to sleep. The more I miss work, the more it makes me feel despair. I felt ashamed and embarrassed. Very depressing. It was heart-wrenching to know I couldn’t work doing what I am very good at because I was labeled a mental case. I resigned from my previous company due to job burnout and took an extended long break to raise my children, heal my mind, and rediscover myself.


I am wise, empathetic, and experienced in the HR Benefits department. I am fully prepared to return to the workforce as all my children are grown and can care for themselves, so I can focus on getting a new HR Professional job. I’m ready to give the job 110%. I’m highly motivated to return to work. I’m the perfect candidate because I deal with employee issues, push paper, run reports, and technically deal with massive amounts of data to provide information to senior management/executives. I have excellent customer service skills handling insurance FMLA; LOA is my vital point. HR Benefits are my forte, and I specialize in it. Much time has passed since I last worked, but this motivates me. Being self-motivated at work means looking beyond the bare minimum of what’s required. I know my goals, strive to find more efficient ways of getting things done, and don’t require constant handholding or reminders about what tasks must be completed.



Responsible for planning and implementing annual health insurance open enrollment. Prepare reports for the underwriters. Typically, my responsibilities revolve around gathering information from employees, explaining policies and regulations, obtaining requirements, and determining whether the employees are eligible for the program or service, including determining the employee’s eligibility for health insurance, verifying such eligibility with the employees, collecting their health records, and managing medical care forms, ensuring they are correct and complete. I help enroll new members into programs, maintain current members, and answer questions about each new program while educating individuals about their benefits. Duties include collecting employee data via phone or in person and compiling it into an organized database. I help employees understand the health/welfare plans and the admissions process. Responsible for directing and planning the day-to-day operations of group benefits programs: group health, dental, short-term and long-term disability, worker’s compensation, life insurance, 401k retirement plan, administering leave of absence, supervising and monitoring benefits administration. They coordinated all aspects of employee relations. Manage property and casualty insurance claims. Mitigated institutional risk and maintained employee confidentiality by adhering to established employment law regulations. They supported company vehicle lease contracts/agreements. Serve as primary contact for customer and employment liability claims. Generated weekly/monthly reports for management. They maintain and ensure up-to-date information in the HR/Payroll ADP system. Perform plan audits. Provide customer service support to 900+ employees. Oversee maintenance of employee benefits files, maintain group benefits database, and update employee payroll records. Was a ‘Go-to” person for complex employee claims, service issues, or employee concerns. Work closely with the VP of HR and executive management to provide proactive and strategic consultation to employees and managers, systematically identifying, addressing, and resolving the root causes of human resource issues.


Selected Contributions:

  • Hired as HR Benefits Administrator, then promoted to Director based on leadership performance, professionalism, significant contributions, and strong interpersonal skills; quickly transitioned to management in HR Benefits Administration. Was a ‘Go-to” person for complex employee claims, service issues, or concerns for 900+ employees, conducted plan audits, and backup for Payroll/Auditing. Instrumental in the timely submittal of Form 5500, healthcare/labor turnover reports, and other required government documents per AA/EEO requirements.
  • Proactively integrated HRIS application, analyzed/assessed capabilities, recommended solutions, and implemented upgrades. Administered ADP applications and certified compliance with HR and AA/EEO policies.
  • Administers benefits programs, including, but not limited to, U.S. health, insurance, wellness, and retirement plans. Interpreting policies/procedures and regulations; auditing and analyzing data; handling escalated employee and provider issues.
  • Manage and resolve employee relations issues by acting as a trusted HR advisor to management and employees.



Administered tests, scheduled appointments, and processed new hires. Collaborated with Payroll to gather time/attendance records and employee data and provide Headcount Reports. Managed employee personnel files, HIPAA records, benefits reports, insurance coverage, and Worker’s Compensation program. Verified EDD Office unemployment/disability insurance requests and outstanding claims/issues and tracked employee eligibility dates. The supported HR team, notified managers, coordinated Employee Performance Reviews, and verified I-9 document compliance. Oversaw all aspects of recruiting and sent new enrollment, change, or termination forms to COBRA via CobraServ. Reconciled monthly invoices, counseled employees on benefits, protected operations, and maintained employee confidentiality by adhering to AA/EEO standards.


  • Responsible for the documentation of Leave in all HR systems
  • Supports onboarding by coordinating and preparing new hire paperwork.
  • Maintain compliance with federal, state, and local employment laws and regulations, recommending changes to policy and processes.
  • Provide administrative and data entry support to the HR department by filing, processing, and reporting as requested.
  • Additional projects as requested by upper management.



Developed and distributed employment kits to new hires and processed new hire paperwork for Payroll, including I-9 documentation for compliance. Enter/update personnel information in the PeopleSoft system, process new hires, employ verifications, and file and maintain records of employee performance evaluations. Coordinate transactions and communication with Payroll Dept.



New hire kit preparation, filing, and general office management (ordering supplies, answering phones, office machine maintenance, kitchen, postage, etc.). Manage health and welfare benefits plans for multiple clients. Administer medical, dental, vision, FSA, life, and disability plans for active and COBRA participants—counsel employees on benefits issues, procedures, and requirements. Provide support and communication to employers or HR representatives. Coordinate transfer of election data to providers. Serves as liaison between insurance carriers and employers/employees. Field and articulate answers to benefit questions and assists clients. Help conducts client meetings (including enrollment meetings, renewal meetings, etc.



Coordinate interview schedules, including travel plans, when necessary. Employment requisition tracking/information maintenance, posting/updating job openings on the internal and external sites, processing background checks, generating offer letters, and creating offer packets. Enter/update applicant’s information into the database (FileMaker Pro) and run weekly recruiting reports.



She performed various administrative duties: switched operator, heavy phone communications and correspondences, arranging meetings and coordinating settings, data entry, incoming/outgoing emails, taking messages, organizing files, and office maintenance. Maintained personnel files, administered employee benefits, computerized vacation and performed hours tracking, coordinated annual benefits open-enrollment meetings, conducted new employees’ orientations, and processed medical/dental/Section 125/ 401k applications. Route resumes and coordinates interviews for candidates with managers.


Thank you for reading about my professional history. If you are looking for a highly energetic, passionate, willing-to-make-a-difference or know empathizing with those in need individual whose accomplishments match the employer’s needs and priorities – that is me. I’m never the one who says, “That is not my job.” I am the opposite. I believe in “Go above and beyond the job scope by finding the answer. I will make work it!” This is me. I am seeking my ideal management job in mid-level HR opportunities to restart my career. I want to be an individual contributor as a management person who performs tasks that contribute to a company’s mission and objectives. I want to work independently or as part of a team but don’t manage company personnel.

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