1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Fantastically enjoyable - the Bank is ambitous and growing, which is a really good enviornment to go into as an intern.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Highly valued, unlike other banks in RBC departments have to ask to have interns; they are never just thrust upon them. Therefore as soon as you start you know you are there for a purpose.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
This was probably the best part of the internship. Structured Products aka derivatives is probably one of the most complex parts of the trading floor. So in the first couple of weeks I asked a lot of questions and the guys on the team were always really helpful in their answers. They understood how closed an environment it is to the outside – information is quite difficult to find without first hand involvement.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Always kept busy, the markets managed to stoop towards Armageddon and back a couple of times in the 8 weeks which made it quite non stop on the trading floor.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I think it’s impossible to have much responsibility as an intern in any structured products department, mostly because FSA regulations mean you can't actually sell, but also because option pricing and structuring is just too complex for an intern to ever have any sort of final responsibility over. But with that as a boundary I had a lot of freedom in what I did.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
The two things I learnt that are most useful for the future are probably computer skills like VBA and a first hand knowledge of the markets. Unfortunately neither of which are related at all to my degree.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Intense and exciting, when the whole trading floor erupts in gasps or claps simultaneously its pretty cool. There is a lot of hustle and bustle as you would expect but it’s also really laid back – especially on Thursday evening and almost all of Friday.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Given how fast the firm is growing, HR does a really good job in keeping the show running. There are lots of intern events and extra training sessions to keep you busy.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
There was a lot of training available in almost every imaginable area of banking – most of it is voluntary and definitely worth doing.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Yeah we all met up on the weekends and after work to go out.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Cheap for The City to be honest, there is an O'Neil's 1 min away and a Spoons 2 mins.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Pretty poor unless you like crowded basements and The Only Way is Essex, but Old Street and London Bridge are really good and they are still walkable.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There was extra Bloomberg training outside of work, and a couple of charity runs and things, but not many 'Join RBC Cricket Team' posters if that is what you are hoping.