1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Fantastic year! My time at J&J has absolutely flown by, I cannot believe it's been a year already! I was made to feel really involved in all the projects I worked on and it became clear right from the beginning that this was a proper job with real responsibilities and the work I did was important.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt very welcomed at the beginning of the year and all employees I met were very interested in my placement and what I studied at uni. My work relationships and networking continued throughout the whole year, I now have some great contacts and have worked in lots of different teams which has been a great experience.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
The support and guidance was always there when I asked for it however in some situations I had to act independently which was a great experience and shows what it will be like when I graduate. Everyone was always so happy to help which again made the placement so enjoyable!
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
During certain times of the year I was extremely busy!! You are not expected to do overtime but quite often I did because I wanted to do a good job on all my projects. But even during the quieter periods there was always something to do which shows how valued you are as an employee and how much responsibility you get.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Every project I did had an element of responsibility. One project in particular that I took the lead on, left me responsible for ensuring our marketing materials were sent out to the sales reps. This meant that I was the key contact for the reps and they relied on me to arrange getting what they needed to hospitals and venues for events.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I have developed in many skill areas that I thought I would never improve on - mainly my time management as I often spend too much time on small tasks! I have learnt how to prioritise my tasks and from the structure of working 9-5 I believe this will help me focus more back at uni. We didn't really have much formal training but learnt a lot on the job that will definitely help in my future career.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
In my particular department it was very lively! It was a really fun atmosphere and there was always something going on! We had a baking rota where every week someone would bake something for everyone. This then turned into "Fat Friday's" where there would be even more food!! Christmas was a great time of the year too, we did Christmas jumper day and put up a Christmas tree.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
A lot of the training we did was on the job training and developing our skills independently. I think this was mainly due to the area of work I was in as we didn't require structured invested training. We had product training at the start of the year which was very interesting and smaller workshops throughout the year for health and safety.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
J&J offer a variety of opportunities for the placement students to come back to the company. There are grad schemes available that we can apply for and get fast tracked through. Alternatively if there is a suitable role available, there is the opportunity to apply for a job straight out of uni which is an amazing prospect!
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
J&J hired a lot of student placements which made the experience even better! We always had people to do things with in the evenings and most weekend we would all go out together. We arranged social events too and this definitely added a lot of value to my year as a whole and I have made some great friends that I will stay in contact with.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Leeds was very reasonable in terms of costs - cheap drinks compared to the south where I'm from! I was living in an apartment building that was just down the road from work, meaning I could often walk to work. My rent was the same as the placement students living in the student area of Leeds.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Leeds was amazing!! I was genuinely so sad to leave. There was always great opportunities to go out and do things in the evenings and weekends. Lots of choice of bars and clubs, catering for any time of night out! The bars were very lively too which meant you didn't have to pay to go into clubs and just bar hop.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?