I was primarily responsible for delivering software support to our 7,000 UK customers who included O2, Chelsea Football Club, the National Blood Service, Bradford and Bingley and Surrey Police. The support was given either by phone, email or web and our team had to maintain high levels of customer satisfaction. Part of my job role was to assist other departments which included explaining functionality if QAS's products, diagnosing problems or giving training in the variety of products that we have available. It was also important to keep account managers informed of any important issues that are raised so they can keep good customer relationships going even if there is a problem. Another responsibility I undertook was mentoring. I was responsible for training the new graduates in all aspects of the job. I also had the opportunity to get involved in other departments such as Human Resources and Marketing.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Overall I really enjoyed my placement year.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
There were recent graduates and placement students in my team who were all very helpful and very friendly.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I had weekly and monthly meetings with my line manager and these were quite formal and structured. This helped with my development throughout the year.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Some days were extremely busy especially when the data expired. Around Christmas time it was quiet. I suppose this is like a lot of jobs.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a huge amount of responsibility after two weeks of training. I was emailing and speaking to customers from all over the UK. Some of the customers were the likes of HSBC, Santander and Centrica. Aftter six months I became a mentor for new graduates and also trained them. This was a fantastic opportunity.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
The skills that I have learnt will help me for my future career. I had to manage a high workload, work under pressure but most importantly learn excellent communication skills to meet the 90% customer satisfaction rate target.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere was fantastic. Having a young team I think helped.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
It was set up well and the application process was smooth compared to some of the other companies that I applied for. The only thing I could fault is the training was crammed into two weeks and it was definitely information overload.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Above 25 days holiday
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I am keeping my options open at the moment and see what happens. I loved the company but I am not sure about going back to the same role again. I think one year in that role was long enough.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Every Friday we went to the pub after work. We also had two Christmas parties and many other events such as pub quiz, jack the ripper tour, meals and cocktails in London and the National Corporate meeting at the Emirates Stadium. You also get a free thai lunch on Wednesdays at a local restaurant.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I lived at home so expenses were low but Clapham is an expensive area to relocate to.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nightlife in Clapham was great!
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Yes there was the chance to get involved in all sorts of events from running the marathon to skydiving to reading to school children in their lunch break.