1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I enjoyed my experience completely, the office was very friendly and the work engaging, varied and challenging, The business clearly puts a lot of work into the internship programme and this shows with the experiences and trainings that the interns could get involved in. I feel the internship has allowed me to develop my skills in a fun yet formal environment.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt very valued from day 1, they put a lot of trust in you to complete jobs effectively and give you responsibility immediately which was very satisfying when finishing a task. All the colleagues were very friendly and loved when you asked questions, plus my feedback I got back at the end and throughout was always positive and constructive.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I think generally the support was a little less than I believed it would be. Upon reading about the internship details, I believe I was meant to be provided with a buddy and advisor of some kind. My counselling manager was unaware of this and although he was very nice and helpful he was frequently out of the office and so I did not have any supervisor. Perhaps this was a communication error up to the Scottish offices.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I was extremely busy most days despite it being a fairly dry time of the year in terms of Audits, I mostly worked on Charities and pension funds but was kept busy with work at all times when I was out at the client offices. In the offices it was a little different, when I had finished my work for the day, they struggled to put me on any other jobs, however I was sometimes drafted into other departments which was a good experience too.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I think I've touched on this above but compared to other firms internships that my friends and family have been part of gave a lot less responsibility to the interns. It made for a far more engaging experience.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
The skills I developed were massive, I became fairly versatile through working with lots of different clients and seeing how they operated on a daily basis. The ability to work under pressure and my communication skills were two skills that I perfected and will use on my degree and beyond.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere in my office was quiet and friendly. All the staff that worked there were approachable and I could ask them questions at any time, they also made an active effort to get to know me and to help me as much as they could.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The organisation of the internship overall was good, the travel down to Birmingham and London with other interns was very well set out and activities booked were all very enjoyable. In terms of negatives, the training sessions within the initial week was fairly poor and the APT platform that we used did not work so I can't say I maximised my learning during any of those sessions.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
To a great extent, the company clearly knows that the future of the company is in the Interns and potential graduates and so the time and the money hey put in to make our experience as good as possible was brilliant.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Very appealing, it seems as you move up the organisation the jobs get very challenging and overtime is frequently taken. However, given the work is very enjoyable and engaging this is something that I am fully ready for.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Myself and the other Scottish interns would meet up weekly for a night out and a catch up and have made very good friends, I have also made friends with some of the graduates and the workers within the office which was positive .
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I commuted each day from Edinburgh to Glasgow and so did not really experience living and socialising in Glasgow.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nightlife once again wasn't really experienced since I was travelling, which was a mild regret.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There was a football tournament that was staged in Reading and is a yearly thing that all BDO offices can enter teams too. Unfortunately I did not go but hopefully if I get the job then I will be attending them all in the future.