1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I have really enjoyed my work placement, where I had the flexibility to experience and work in multiple areas of Supply Chain within the business, and even had a month out of Supply Chain in Operations.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Majority of my colleagues were very friendly and welcoming, and all seemed to value me being there, by giving me large amounts of responsibility and high profile pieces of work. However, the hospitality of each team has varied slightly, yet all teams that I have worked in have been friendly and chat freely to me.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
My managers have been very supportive, some have been extremely prepared and structured as to what work I will be doing and others flexible and let me choose what I want to do - but all overall are very supportive.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Depending what stage of each project the teams have been in, I have been really busy and have always had lots of tasks to do. I love being busy, so I would always accept extra work and take on new challenges on top of current loads of work too. There is a large amount of work that can be done, and it is partially up to yourself how much you can manage and want to take on.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a lot of responsibility in my placements, where some was quite surprising. I have been the main point of contact to suppliers, and issuing them documentation. My manager trusts me to talk to suppliers first hand, meet them on my own and send them documents/work without checking it. I have also managed multi-million pound contracts.
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 invaluable skills: networking, technical skills such as Excel, managing large amounts of data, numerical skills, visual management, conducting meetings, prioritising, time management, problem solving, team work, leadership, organisational, lean working, analysis, customer service, listening, innovation, presentation and public speaking, decision making, adaptability and goal setting.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
This varies from office to office, but a lot of people that I have encountered can have a good laugh aside from work, which is great as it makes the environment to work in more relaxing. There is a firm culture in the office where there aren't many recent graduates or younger employees. Overall, the atmosphere is good!
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
It has been set up really well - the placements I have had have been organised well and thought out of who I will work with and will the placements link to one another. However, there could have been a better set up from the beginning - when my year of IPs (Industrial Placements) started we weren't able to access any of the networks and systems, where some were everyday using ones now. Therefore, the company could have set us up with these prior to starting, or allocated us all an IT contact if not. Also, once asking for access, it could be weeks to gain access with the training and number of people you have to go through. Aside from this issue, the placement work was organised and definitely was planned to develop us.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
The company invest a lot to develop us, and let us proactively find work where they value us for finding anything that will develop us more, as the opportunities at BAE Systems are vast. There are courses available from time to time, communicated via email, where you can attend to learn or be trained on a matter. Aside from these, my managers ensure I am developing by holding a Placement Review with me every 3 months to see what I have learnt differently in each placement.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
It would be a great company to work for. However, I would ideally prefer more young colleagues to have more common ground. The graduate scheme sounds appealing, with some incentives.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
As said earlier, between colleagues it is okay, but people have to be proactive and most people in the offices are 30/40+. Between placement students, there are only 8 of us in my year in Glasgow, and none of us are from here, so we proactively got in touch with eachother and we meet up a lot. The company didn't really support this at all, and would not support me much in meeting other IPs. I had to proactively find them and network with them myself, but now that I have managed this - our social life is good. I do think BAE should support and arrange events for us to network together though, like they do for Graduates.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I think the cost of living is reasonable in Glasgow. There isn't masses to do next to work (Scotstoun site), as there aren't lots of shops etc, as it is on an industrial estate/road. However, within a few miles there are a lot of shops, restaurants and pubs, etc, such as Clydebank and Partick, and the City Centre isn't that far from work either - in event that you bike, drive or use public transport.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
There isn't much around the Scotstoun site, especially to do with nightlife. However, it is unlikely you live next to work - and the city centre's nightlife is really good. It is not that hard to get to, with the subway, buses and trains.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
No. This is something that I thought there would be more of at BAE Systems. I thought, like other placement offering companies, that there would be sports clubs, events outside of work for employees, etc, but there is not anything like this. I think this is due to the older culture within BAE, as majority are over 30/40 I believe and have families, so maybe are not interested in this. Therefore, the minority of us that would like these opportunities miss out. Some people e-mail groups of friends/their part of the office/their team if they are doing something in Glasgow e.g. Paisley Beer Festival, and meet up, but obviously you only hear about these if you are in the same team/group of friends.