1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I really enjoyed my placement, my role was completely varied throughout the year and I got the chance to spend a lot of time running events and projects outside the office as well as sitting at my desk. My role provided an incredible number of opportunities to network with both internal and external stakeholders and to understand various areas of the business. I was given a huge amount of responsibility very early on but was constantly monitored by my managers to ensure I was prioritising/comfortable with the tasks I has been delegated.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt 100% valued by my colleagues. My team seemed as though they really valued my input, I wasn't treated as 'the intern' at all and was constantly given praise for the hard work I had done. My opinions were taken into account just as much as anyone else within the team and I was encouraged to make contributions in meetings and actively give feedback to others in my team.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
As my line manager changed mid-way during my internship, there was a month in which the level of supervision dropped off as her replacement hadn't started yet. I felt like the time I spent without a manager was great for my own development but at times I felt a little unclear on tasks and that I didn't have anyone to ask. However, the level of management/supervision naturally decreases as you become more comfortable with your role and responsibilities anyway.
I learnt a lot about myself and my way of working by having 2 different managers with totally different management styles.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
My role was constantly busy but because the tasks were so varied it didn't feel like it got too monotonous. I spent lots of time working with different groups of people, on different projects and in different locations which worked well for me as I didn't know what I wanted to do when I joined L'Oréal. I definitely had the opportunity to experience lots of different projects and areas of the business.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a lot of responsibility right from the start of my placement, from presentations to organising events, to coordinating big meetings and groups. There was never a time where I wasn't single-handedly managing some sort of project. I personally enjoyed it but can imagine it over-whelming for some
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I think the skills that I have developed since being at L'Oréal are very different to those that I have developed at Uni. I think the main skills that I've developed that will help me back at Uni are presentation skills and time management. Lots of the others are just general business skills that may not be as applicable.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The general atmosphere was friendly but people were also very busy so some days were much busier than others. Lots of people work from home on certain days which means it can be quite quiet at times but I was encouraged to be in the office as much as possible.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The overwell placement was very well organised, I had clear objectives set at the beginning and these were monitored in my mid and end of year reviews. I felt as though there was a clear plan of things I was expected to do and what was not appropriate for intern level.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I felt fully invested in terms of training and development. I was never told that I couldn't go on a training course or attend a meeting, even if it wasn't aimed at my level. There is plenty going on with the learning team and they have recently introduced lots of great training programmes.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I'd definitely want to come back and work at L'Oréal. I feel as though the culture and the people fit in well with my personality type and I hope to have a job here in future. My team have been great with helping me to find what career would be best for me.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There was a large intern community so plenty of social activities going on. They often consisted of going to the pub or bars but it was dependent on how involved you got as to how much you knew about what was going on socially with the interns, grads and apprentices.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
The cost of socialising was very expensive, especially in comparison to students nights etc at Uni. I feel like this is the same with any placement in London so not exclusively L'Oréal. The cost of living is also high but some interns shared houses which made it a little more reasonable.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nightlife in Hammersmith wasn't great but you could be in town within 20 minutes where there were lots more options. You could always find a nice local pub or restaurant but there wasn't a huge amount to offer compared with central London and the pubs and bars weren't as competitively priced.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Yes, there were lots of opportunities but you had to go out and find out about them. I socialised with my team a lot but there are various clubs like running and football and yoga and netball that go on around the office. There were also lots of random events in the office/canteen to get involved in.