I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here at Egress, finding it both a challenging and interesting experience throughout. During my placement, I was provided with lots of opportunities to get involved in numerous important roles as well as being given the responsibility to drive my own personal projects. Some of these projects revolved around areas such as; recruitment, benefits, general HR admin and many others. Each working day offered different experiences and gave me exposure to the numerous elements of HR.
I feel that my time at Egress has given me an excellent start to my career and a great confidence boost.
From day one I have felt like a permanent member of staff at Egress and not just a placement student; this has become evident through the responsibility I have been given in my role.
During my time at Egress regular communication between myself and colleagues from all levels, including execs, have helped me to feel like a valuable and trusted HR placement student.
The HR team at Egress are made up of myself and 3 employees. The nature of the team is very independent on a daily basis, however they’re always there to give advice and offer support when needed. As a result of this, the work you do is recognised quickly and you are able to build good working relationships with your colleagues.
A large proportion of the support and guidance I received was on the job which is great for continuous learning and having the opportunity to independently resolve issues.
Over the year I spent with Egress I had lots of work to do, including projects such as looking for new benefit schemes, finding the future placement students, and getting Egress shortlisted for the RMP 2016 National Undergraduate Award. As well as the projects that I carried out I was also tasked with general admin work for both new joiners and existing employees. This meant that each day was different at Egress and I always had work to be getting on with when I arrived at the office in the mornings.
Throughout my time at Egress I was given a lot of responsibility which I am extremely thankful for. Often, I was the main point of contact when employees needed assistance with our internal HR system, further to this I had full exposure to our data management which is not often trusted to placement students. Lastly, during my time at Egress I was given the opportunity to organise our trip to a University Career Fair and lead the recruitment process of our future placement students. This included CV screening, telephone interviewing and being heavily involved in the organisation of our internal recruitment events.
The skills I have learnt during my time with Egress will be extremely useful for not only the rest of my studies, but also in my future career. The exposure I have gained at Egress has allowed me to understand numerous aspects of HR and has equipped me with the ability to communicate with colleagues of all levels. Further to this the sheer relevance of the department I have worked in against my degree will allow me to put information into context, helping me gain a better understanding in my HR modules.
The office environment has been exceedingly welcoming, friendly and collaborative. Everyone was extremely approachable and offered their time whenever I needed it – which was particularly helpful when organising recruitment events. Egress host an internal ‘shout out’ chat which encourages employees to praise their colleagues for great work. This helped to create an extremely supportive environment where employees recognise the hard work and efforts of others.
I believe that my placement year at Egress was extremely well organised from start to finish. I was contacted very quickly after my assessment day and offered the role, the same day I was sent out my contract, offer letter and new starter information. Throughout my time on placement there were projects lined up for me from the day I started so that I gained exposure from the off. As the placement went on there was the opportunity to create and drive my own projects in order to explore different areas of HR.
As a placement student I did not expect to have much personal training and development invested in me, however throughout my time at Egress I was given the opportunity to suggest activities that I wanted to do. For example, sitting in on interesting webinars, attending career fairs and presenting to over 100 students at a university placement workshop, all of which I believe have helped me to develop my skills.
The prospect of returning to Egress is extremely appealing. I can see lots of room for professional growth within the HR department at Egress which is an exciting opportunity.
The social scene amongst the employees of Egress was excellent! As well as monthly arranged for (and paid for) socials, employees often arranged their own social events for people’s birthdays or just a casual night out. Further elements that helped create a great social scene included dress down Friday, beers O’clock on a Friday afternoon and charity events such as regular bake sales, a pancake flipping competition and various other events.
As I was living in my own accommodation outside of the area, rent costs within distance of the office did not apply to me, however I am led to believe that there are lots of forums offering spare bedrooms across London. As Egress is currently situated in Zone 2 this makes living and socialising in the area slightly cheaper than central however it still carries London prices.
The nightlife in Queen’s Park was rather limited and although there are some nice pubs and eateries in close vicinity of the office, we often got the tube into central London for a night out. Luckily a few of the employees at Egress attended London Universities and therefore know the best (cheapest) student nights.
Outside of work there are various opportunities to get involved in, including 5 a side football, badminton, and the Global Corporate Challenge which occurs between April and September every year. There are also socials organised and paid for by the execs once a month which are always good fun and have included events such as quiz nights, bingo, bowling, go karting and many others.