As a Product Assistant it is my responsibility to steer the strategy of the resorts I look after. We work on the Product cycle and complete tasks including Pricing, brochure pagination, competition reviews and choosing which accommodations to feature in our programme.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I really enjoyed my year at TUI. As a placement you get a lot of opportunities to get involved in projects that you wouldn't ordinarily be involved in, which means you get to know multiple teams around the business. TUI is a very sociable company with something always going on. Everyone is really friendly and I felt settled in to the role very quickly.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
As soon as I started my role, I had responsibility of a resort which meant the decisions I made had the potential to add value to the business. As we get the same level of responsibility as any other Product assistant, I felt like I was a key member of my team. Work myself and the other placements have produced from our placement projects is going on to be used in the business which shows how much TUI values the work we did.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
On placement, you have both the placement team and your department team to turn to for support. The placement team organise monthly meetings where we can discuss any concerns/issues/ideas and we are also allocated a buddy. My manager was great at suggesting workshops I could attend and helping me to make connections in the business that could help me both in my everyday role and for when I go back to university.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I always had enough on and every day I had new tasks coming in. Although I was busy, it helped me to learn to manage my time and get involved in different opportunities. If I ever felt too busy, I was able to go to my manager and she would help me prioritise my tasks. As I had various kinds of tasks on a one time, it didn't get boring.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
As a placement you get given as much responsibility as any other employee. Together with my manager, I looked after 3 resorts where I could make strategic decisions on how I thought the gateway should look. Over the year, I have presented multiple pieces of work to seniors and key stakeholders from different areas of the business.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
During the year I have attended various workshops that have been organised by the placement team. For example we had an Excel and Presentation session which I think will really benefit me in my final year. We were also encouraged to complete half days in other departments that within the business that we were interested in. My manager has been great at encouraging me to make connections for my final year and suggested courses and workshops that will benefit me in my day-to-day role and back at university.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
I would say the general atmosphere in the office is work hard, play hard. Everyone puts a lot of effort into their role but people always make sure their is time to be rewarded. There are lots of extra things going on such as team nights/Commercial nights out/sports events. The office is open plan which makes it easy to approach different teams.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The TUI placement team organise a general plan for the year and put in monthly meetings where we can feedback ideas/concerns. When you join, there's a four week training period, two of which are when the previous placements are still in the office so you can learn from them. Training sessions they think we'll need are planned into these four weeks and through the year other sessions are put in for example workshops and placement projects.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
As well as the four week training period at the beginning of placement, we had multiple training sessions and workshops throughout the year. The placement team listen to what the placements would like to get involved in/feel like they could benefit from, and then can organise sessions with the relevant people. We are also encouraged to take half days in different teams around the business. When I felt like I needed training on something, I felt comfortable putting time in with that team.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
At TUI, there was always something going on including, commercial events, sports games and nights out. There are a committee called who organise events for the department and there was always a group doing something that you could get involved in. On my placement year there were 7 placements so it's a good number for everyone to know each other.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Luton is cheap to live in which is great. It's also close to London so you can have the best of both worlds. We often go out in places such as Harpenden and St Albans as drinks are cheaper than London but I think the places are nicer than Luton.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
During my placement year we didn't go out in Luton that much. We often went to Harpenden, St Albans and into London. Trains run back from London all night Monday-Friday which is perfect. Thursday nights were a popular night out and there were always people you could go out with if you wanted to.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?