1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I thoroughly enjoyed my 9 weeks with Aon. A large aspect of this was the fantastic team I was placed in, who were not only very welcoming but were also very helpful in terms of shaping my learning and development during my time there. I found the work interesting, and was given tasks that challenged me but were enjoyable at the same time.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
The colleagues in the team I was placed in were excellent. They gave me tasks that many other interns did not get the opportunity to do which made me feel like my work was adding value. Everyone was always appreciative of any help I gave them with their work, and the feedback I received at the end of my internship made me feel very valued.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I had a good relationship with my line manager who talked me through things and was always available for support when needed. However, it was the 'buddy' system that Aon use that was most beneficial to me. My buddy was always on hand to answer questions I had, to give me work to do, and was also key in making me feel settled and part of the team. This combination of a line manager who could oversee my work and offer support when needed, and the buddy who was probably a more active mentor in my opinion worked very well.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
In general I was kept busy reasonably well. I was given some projects that spanned over a long period of time which was useful as I was able to go to these when I didn't have any other outstanding tasks. There were times when I had finished my tasks and didn't have much to do, but these occasions were not the norm.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given what I felt to be a considerable amount of responsibility. I was allowed to meet underwriters on my own and carry out tasks on behalf of the other brokers, which was not only an opportunity that I did not expect to get, but one that few other interns were given. There were clear limitations to the responsibility I was given due to the nature of my experience, but I felt I was given as much responsibility as they were able to.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
Due to the nature of my degree (History) not correlating a great deal with insurance broking, the training and job experience will probably not assist me much with my degree studies. Beyond my studies, however, the skills I gained in terms of building relationships with new people both internally in my team and externally with underwriters will be very valuable, particularly if I decide to go into insurance in the future.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere of my floor was in my opinion a very good one. While people sometimes got irritated when things went wrong, in general it was a happy office. I enjoyed coming into work as I would find myself laughing and smiling for much of the day, as the atmosphere was one of no one taking themselves too seriously. That being said, this did not detract from the fact that people worked hard, and there was certainly an emphasis as well of getting the job done efficiently and to a high standard.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
I feel that the organisation of the internship was mixed. The organisation of the Corporate Social Responsibility project was good, and we were always well aware of what we needed to do for that. The induction week was also well organised. However, communication with the graduate team was not always particularly swift.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
It was clear that they were keen to ensure I got as much out of the internship as possible. The induction training we received was in my opinion good, in particular our training that was specific to the area we were working in. My team were also keen to ensure that I developed my understanding of the business and the industry, and thus regularly spent time with me talking things through and ensuring my knowledge and understanding was to a good standard.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
It was indicated that 1 in 2 interns would be offered a graduate position, which was encouraging. There was nothing in my time with Aon that would have put me off considering future employment with them. The feedback I received at the end of my internship was also encouraging with regards to the prospect of receiving a graduate offer.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The social scene was as much or as little as you wanted to make it. There was a good group of interns who socialised fairly regularly, but equally it was not something that was forced upon us if we did not want to. The social scene with other colleagues was broadly similar to this.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Aon is located at the heart of the square mile, which is an expensive place to live and socialise. For people who did not already have a living option in London, it would have been difficult to find an affordable place to live that was available for just 9 weeks. It is also an expensive place to eat and drink, so you had to be prepared to spend money if you wanted to socialise.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nature of the nightlife in the square mile was very much centred around pubs and bars, and the price of these was unsurprisingly expensive and reflected the nature of the amount of money in the area. Despite the cost, the nightlife was good nonetheless. For people that were not interested in drinking, the nightlife was probably more limited in scope.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were not a huge amount of activities outside of work that I was aware of. Colleagues certainly socialised a good amount, and the opportunities to get involved with this was good, but in terms of actual activities, there was not much. However, whether this was true for the whole company and not just the case for my specific team is difficult to say.