1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I cannot express how much I enjoyed my placement year at SAP. I had an incredible year and learnt so much about the industry and my function. I would recommend SAP to anybody that wishes to work for an organisation that have a genuine passion for developing early talent.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I always felt extremely valued by my colleges and peers. At SAP, interns are not viewed as interns but as a member of the team, much like your superiors. You'll be given real responsibility and real projects to own and run with.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I received lots of support and guidance from my manger and team alike. I would meet formally with my manager in weekly 1 to 1's, where we would discuss what I had on my agenda at the time. I would also meet formally in weekly team meetings, and once weekly in informal team meetings over coffee where we would discuss common matters and seek to learn from each other. I found all of the above extremely useful in accelerating my development.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I found I had a perfect balance. My manager was great at understating the value of a healthy work life balance and would often ensure that I had just that. If I ever felt like I had a little too much on, I would always feel comfortable to discuss this with my manager. I was encouraged to take on a little or as much as I felt comfortable with. Communication is key.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
A tremendous amount. I was given the opportunity to lead a global project, as the representative for the United Kingdom. As I mentioned above, you really are treated as a real team member, not as a placement student. You'll be given a huge amount of responsibility and your manager will always ensure you receive the appropriate amount of support to make this an enjoyable opportunity, not a terrifying one!
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 during my placement year have undoubtedly helped in my final year of studies thus far, it has brought to life the many theories we read about and helped me to apply them to real life situations. It has also opened my eyes to the many career paths available to me, especially when concerning those at SAP. SAP invest a lot of money in intern development days at fun locations in London, (normally followed by drinks on the Thames). They are a great chance to learn new skills, put your skills to the test or just to have fun with the 45 other interns!
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Fun! There is always so much happening in the office there is rarely a dull day. SAP is predominantly a sales organisation so of course, with sales comes pressure, however the sales teams find a way to turn pressure into motivation and the atmosphere could be described as exciting.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The internships at SAP are set up really well. Managers could be more aligned to ensure all interns have a similar experience, however I wasn't aware of one intern that didn't have a great year. On the whole, I couldn't fault the set up at SAP.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
SAP invest lots in the training and development of early talent, we had two development days in Mayfair where we were able to develop our soft skills with a professional coach. Some of us were even fortunate enough to catch flights to bootcamps or training events in Paris, Dubai, Barcelona or Ireland. Lead your own development, ask for training (it may be online training, not glamorous but could be hugely helpful later in life).
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Sports and Social Club
Above 25 days holiday
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I would say extremely appealing. SAP do not have any formal graduate programmes as such. However, they do have range of 'entry level' positions that would be attractive to graduates, for example, Sales Academy, HR Academy, Marketing Academy. I was fortunate enough to secure a graduate position at SAP - so whilst not hugely common it isn't impossible and I hope and expect to see many of my fellow interns return.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Amazing! We were a group of 45 interns that become 45 great friends almost instantly. SAP host a number of social events to promote and create a social scene, then it is down to the interns to keep it up. However, that isn't a problem. There will also be lots to do from lunch out, house parties, after work drinks on a Thursday; the list is endless.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
HQ is close to Fetham (Middlesex) so if you wish to keep costs down, you are able to by living in the surrounding areas. However, if you wish to live in London, expect London prices.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
HQ is close to Fetham (Middlesex) so not great. However it's a 20 minute train to Waterloo and with 5 offices in zones 1-6 there is plenty of change to have a drink or 10 in the city.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?