Amazing. I enjoyed every aspect of my year long placement at Golfbreaks. The role itself provided plenty of opportunity to explore and learn new things. The close community atmosphere created was perfected for settling in and becoming part of the family. There was never a boring day in the office as there is always stuff going on which really helped for the first few months to get to know everybody.
I feel my team in the finance department really helped and guided me through my daily jobs and responsibilities with accuracy. If there was anything i was unsure about, there was never any shortage of people to turn to. As the year progressed, more responsibility and trust was handed over which really made me feel comfortable and valued by my employer. Rewards were given and praise received for good work and encouragement was always given.
Step by step guides on my duties were given at the start of new procedures with detailed notes and diagrams to improve my knowledge on specific subjects. Working in a small pod allowed easy communication between us and our line manage who would always take the time to explain further if something wasn't understood. Weekly meetings were a good way of catching up on projects and duties and really allowed us to plan our time accordingly.
It varies as the seasons depending on the region of suppliers being looked after. September and October, April and May, were the busy periods for myself as floods of invoices would be coming in. Allowing for time during the week to set aside solely for invoice inputting was well advised and assistance was given to me for planning my time in these busy periods.
Throughout my placement, I developed to take on different responsibilities as the year progressed. From taking over key supplier accounts, to processing payments, and manual entering to the nominal journals on the accounting system. At times, i felt there was no way I was experienced enough to be given this responsibility but my line managers trusted in me and made it not seem so daunting. I felt really grateful these opportunities were given to me as I feel i have learnt so much through this experience.
The skills developed on the job apply to the finance side of my degree as the accounts payable role involves journal entries and all aspects such as credit, debit, journal entries. This tied in extremely well with units I had already learnt and will aid me in my advanced modules next year. The use of the accounting system sage will put me in a great position when applying for roles post graduation as it shows this experience i have gained. Monthly training sessions were held by the finance manager to apply everything learnt at university to the financial statements of Golfbreaks. This came in so handy as being able to see real life examples aided me in being able to see how figures can portray a message.
The general atmosphere around the office was brilliant! A great community of around 25 students made a close family right from the start with the HR team encouraging inter company socials. The office, all being open plan, and the directors having open door policy really literates how open the company is and really creates a friendly atmosphere for all employees and visitors. Company social events happened regularly allowing a further mix of personalities that encouraged this family atmosphere.
The placement, right from the interview process all the way up to our final day was extremely well organised. The HR team running the recruitment process to an excellent level really encouraged me to accept the job offer once received. A pre-placement day happened prior to starting which allowed us to all meet each other and meet the team we would be working with. This really helped the integration of students into the workplace and made the first day a little more comforting than it would have been if you got thrown into the deep end. A two week handover period with the former placements was useful to get to grips with your daily routine and proved valuable.
The company itself invested a lot of time and resources in the student body as a whole which really encouraged everyone to do their best. The directors held a dragons den style competition which showed they value our opinions and really helped us get to know them.
As for training, the finance manager giving us monthly training on theory learnt in uni and applying it to Golfbreaks really helped me understand the role and ho crucial certain aspects of our job are. Quarterly 1 to 1's with my line manager regarding my Personal development plan allowed me to really get everything i wanted out of my year.
The experience i have received and all the responsibilities given will really help me stand out on my CV. It has been made clear if you work well throughout the year, Golfbreaks will look to employ you back as a graduate, and that is what I am really hoping to get from this. The skills developed matching up with the theory learnt throughout my degree should put me in the best possible position come graduation for a role in such an industry.
The social scene amongst colleagues and around the company was excellent. Fridays during the summer was a highlight as come 5 o'clock there would always be something going on to celebrate the weekend and everyone would be encouraged to join in. I believe this to be an amazing way to get everyone involved. Annual social events such as the summer social and the GONGS award ceremony allowed this further integration which I found such a good way of creating the friendly atmosphere Golfbreaks offers its employees.
The cost of living in Windsor is on the pricey side and rents around this area are at a premium. This being said, I was living local as ,y parents are around here. For me the location is ideal because I had a perfect balance between family and work life. Talking to other students their main complaint was the rent price however it was possible to find affordable living just 10 minutes out of town which was useful for most. Nights out are as expected in such an area, but the pay is good enough to compensate.
The nightlife in Windsor is really good with a whole row of bars under the Windsor railway arches. This proves the most popular place and its quite smart and a fun night out. The main big club has recently been renovated and offers a larger area for dancing. The other pubs around windsor are in excellent locations along the river with large gardens. There was always plans every week to make the most of the nightlife.
The possibilities were endless. There would be friday evening drinks planned most weeks which were advertised on our internal system. These were strongly encouraged to get everyone to join in. This provided such a great platform for getting to know each other. I thought the social activities were always a great laugh and helped my work life as i could get to know everyone in an out of work manner as well as a professional.