1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
My internship was very satisfactory experience. I enjoyed the corporate culture, which was very open and supportive. There was no competition between the interns, I had a really good connection with them. I am happy that I was a part of the internship program and I feel that it was a very important first step in my career. I could recommend the internship program to anyone who sees his career in finance.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt extremely valued by my team and colleagues! I was given many responsibilities, trusted with projects and task and given the opportunity to work with people across the division as well as within my team. I received constant feedback, on a weekly basis from my line manager to ensure I was on track, provided with tips and advice on progress and areas to improve on.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I was given a lot of support, although my manager encouraged me to try to get on with tasks independently, which I did. I was always able to confidently ask for help and it was always provided. It can always be daunting joining a new team or company but the one advice I would give is ASK, ASK and ASK again. Someone will always stop to guide you on back on track.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
The workload was a bit uneven, there were days when I had too much tasks and events, especially during the first month and some boring moments, but most of the time it was ok. The working hours are not bad, on average around 8-9h/day, and although I needed to stay late few times to finish some task, that definitely was not often.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I haven't got too much responsibility as an intern. The tasks I was given were usually very thoroughly checked by more senior colleagues, and they were not very important for the team's everyday work. I worked on my projects quite independently but they were more of exercise than actual business cases.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I studied Financial Derivatives and the area I was working in was very much focused on that. It helped me understand my course more, I was building hedges, analyzing trades and working on month end tasks. It was very relevant to my studies and having that practical experience is very beneficial.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere was very informal. It was quite easy to connect with most of the people and the spirit of connection was really encouraged. Everyone seemed to support each one on their daily tasks and there were many after work drinking events organised by the various divisions at the bank.
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?
There was one week training in the beginning of the internship. During the next two months we had also some training, where we could develop e.g. presentation, soft skills, network. There was put much stress on the feedback session where I was told in detail what should I improve and how to do this. My general impression was that the company can and want to invest in my development.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I thin that possible career path within RBC is really appealing, The company invests a lot in employee's development. There is very attractive development program within my current area, and I would like to move to other division/line of business, the company has a quite flexible approach. The senior employees seems to be satisfied with their careers, so I think that it is a good place for long term.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
London city center is very expensive to live. Often room rental exceeds £800 a month, which makes a significant part of the salary. To go out at night for drinks is not very expensive, however, if you wish to have a nice dinner at a restaurant, expect to pay around £30. A more cheaper form is to grab some food and go to the riverbanks or parks and eat there! This is what I was doing pretty much every lunch time.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
As part of the internship programme, RBC organised a treasure hunt that was quite fun and good to find some of the most magnific hidden spots in London. It was also a good activity to meet other interns from the other working divisions.
On top of this, RBC also organised many networking events such as breakfasts and drinking events at RBC bar.