Account Manager for Selfridges Harrods Brown Thomas Liberty and Harvey Nichols
Managed day to day order processing, queries regarding order discrepancies and general enquires.
Managed integration of new brands in retailers from a customer perspective
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I have really enjoyed my supply chain placement at L'Oreal. They really give you an insight into what working life post university is like. All the work you do actually makes an impact, which is really rewarding. You get the opportunity to branch out and work with different people in different teams so it was really fun as the possibilities are endless.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I feel like my colleagues really do value the work that I do. I never feel like I am 'just an intern'. I feel like I am part of the team and an asset to L'Oreal. This is shown when I get feedback from people outside my team on how well I am doing.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
With the internship, you really are thrown in the deep end. I have learnt you can only get help if you ask.Whilst in some situations I've felt as though I could have had more support, in others I'm glad I haven't as it has really help me grow and develop as a person. It also has meant I have my own identity within the business which I think is really important.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
When I first started my placement I was far too busy, but never bored. In ways I enjoyed having lots to do as it meant I was always doing something new. I also feel that this was to do with being new to the business, having learnt and developed I have found now I am more able to get the work life balance I originally wanted.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given at lot of responsibility during my placement. Sometimes I thought surely an intern can't have this much responsibility? I've been managing accounts for some of L'Oreal largest retailers and helped with some of their newest launches. I really enjoyed having the responsibility as it has helped me develop a confidence and feel valuable to the company.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I come from an engineering background, so my placement has helped me develop softer skills as opposed to technical. I have learnt to work better in teams, and problem solve and really think outside of the box to come to a solution. It has also given me a better insight to what businesses are like. Going forward I will be able to look at engineering issues with a business eye which will be good for the business modules I am pursuing.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
My office is lively, friendly and there is never a dull moment. You are always surrounded by so many people who are willing to help you whenever you need! It also makes working a lot easier. Communicating in person as opposed to by email makes a HUGE difference. It also doesn't feel very corporate. The people are professional but also down to earth and approachable which really makes you feel at ease when your starting a full time job for the first time.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
For my role in particular, it was more of an actual role instead of an intern position. So in that respect it is quite difficult to describe. As the tasks were more day-to-day and adapting to circumstances which is something no-one could have anticipated. From a HR perspective everything was really easy. The only thing I would have wanted would have been more projects which were set in stone from the beginning.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
The company has training sessions which are self sign up and available to all employees. Additionally there is a bank of online courses which all employees can sign up to. They really do encourage you to participate in as much as possible. When they hire you, they are investing in you as a person.
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?
Having spent my time at L'oreal, I would definitely consider coming back. Being an intern here is really valuable as it means you are able to be preferentially considered against external employees for the graduate scheme. They also have a range of routes you can apply for which means they really do consider what is best for you too. I am currently applying for the graduate scheme.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
L'Oreal has so many interns! We even have an intern committee which organise regular events and socials. You can participate in sport if you like. We have an intern newsletter also which means you can regularly be kept up to date with all interns. This is great as is means you get to know different people in different roles and get a wider insight in to what life at L'Oreal is really like!
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
My placement was based in London which is the most expensive city. However, the company helped me reach out to other interns and together we flat share. This has significantly reduced the cost of living. Student finance also give an additional loan quantity for those with work placements in London. If you are considering ever to live in London this will probably be the cheapest time to find out what life is like. Socialising in general is more expensive however you have endless options and are never bored.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I live in Hammersmith to be by the office and the nightlife there isn't the best. There are a lot of pubs and the pub culture is pretty dominant in the workplace so this is what we regularly do. Hammersmith is quite central which means we can travel not far out to get to different clubs etc so its pretty easy.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
I believe there are always opportunities if you make them yourself! London is full of things to do if you look in the right place! The company send you activities you can get involved in which you can get at a discount which is also really good! It really depends on what you are like as a person.