Day to day admin duties for the department
Organisation of events related to the department
Car Scheme management
I have really enjoyed my placement year at PSA. The role I went in to has developed and changed since I have been here which has meant I have been able to work with people all over the business and get involved in some really big projects. I've been constantly supported by my Manager and team throughout and have always had the Training team to talk to when I've had questions.
I feel I was given a 'proper job' here, and not just given some extra bits of work to do which no one else wanted. I've been pushed in to learning new skills and developing myself professionally, and always had the opportunity for feedback from my Manager who has always given me advice.
I've always felt valued by my team mates and others I have worked with, everyone is appreciative of the work you do and it helps you to see the value in the smaller tasks (these are sometimes the ones you get the most thanks for!). They're all very supportive and have included me every step of the way.
I have had bi-weekly 1-2-1's throughout my placement, which means I have always been able to recognise my weaknesses and been given advise on how I can improve my skills to strengthen them. The advice I have been given has always been contructive and given me a way to improve, rather than just being told I have done something wrong. My manager has always been happy to work through things with me and help me get my head around it until I understand it enough to do it myself¬
I was always encouraged to take the initiative and try something new with my managers support, which gave me the confidence to do so.
I would say very busy, but manageable at the same time. It was rare that I had nothing to do, and when I asked for more work there was always something I could do, even if just for an afternoon. My manager was always aware of how well I was coping with my workload, which meant if I was getting a bit overwhelmed she'd either help me to manage my time better or make sure I was given a bit of a break. I've never had to take anything home with me or stay late at work very often.
I was given the responsibility of a normal employee, which was a bit daunting when I first started but I was given the support which meant I learned how to manage the workload and where I needed to find information.
I worked on some big projects and was trusted to manage and create large parts of some of them with little input from my manager.
Time management - this is the key skill I have learned this year which will help me in final year. It's something I never got the hang of at uni because of my low contact hours, but working to a set time schedule has really helped improve my organisation and prioritisation skills which will be really important next year whilst doing my dissertation.
Communication - this was an unexpected skill I've learned because I have always been quite good at communicating but doing it in a work place is something new to me. I've learned how to get my point across whilst still being respectful towards someone who has more experience than me - this is definitely a useful skill!
The office is really friendly and I've got to know everyone really well. We often have a bit of a joke around but not to the extent that we don't get things done, it's nice to be able to go from having a friendly chat to talking about a work problem in the same conversation as it makes it feel less formal. Everyone's always willing to help as well!
Everything ran smoothly throughout the process. I only had one problem which was during the application stage and that was dealt with really quickly and didn't cause me any hassle whatsoever - the training team are always around to help and know exactly what they're doing. There haven't been any problems since I first started but I would've felt I could go to the training team or my manager had there been.
We have 3 IP training session throughout the year. The content was based around what our managers would be expecting from us at each stage of our placement and really helped put things in to perspective for me. I've also spent a lot of time with my manager and the team learning from them and being taught the skills I need to do my job properly and develop in my role.
There are a lot of changes going on with the organisation at the moment, but I would definitely come back to this role if I could. It suits my skills and my interests really well and I enjoy working with the people here.
They do have a grad scheme which I will probably apply for but I'm not sure what I want to do yet! I will definitely be looking at what the company have to offer for me next year though as I've enjoyed myself so much this year.
In my department we have regular socials, and I know many departments across the business do the same. There are a number of other young people in the business as we have Business Apprentices and Graduates as well as us Industrial Placement students, so there's never a shortage of young people to socialise with around the office.
There are also social events run by the company throughout the year, like a Summer BBQ, Christmas Party, and Quiz nights which are really fun and a good way to get to know more people.
It's pretty inexpensive to live in Coventry, the rent I paid was a lot cheaper than what I had paid at university which was good! Coventry is also pretty cheap in general as it isn't a large city so you don't suffer from hikes in prices like in bigger cities. Socialising is also pretty cheap as there's a large student population in Coventry and the surrounding area so its geared towards people of our ages who are at uni.
Coventry nightlife is very student based so it's not much different from being at uni, Coventry is smaller than most city centres though. There's also Leamington which is a good night out and Birmingham is a really short train journey for a bigger night out. There's loads of opportunities to go out so don't worry about this if you like a night out.
Yes, there are sports clubs and the Social Committee runs events through the year. There's also departmental nights out which I have been on, people around work are always organising things out side of work to do.