1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Simply put, if you ask me to pick a highlight from my 12 months at Porsche Cars Great Britain, I would struggle to fit them all on the page. The company acknowledge your role as much more than just an internship, there are opportunities to take on projects and charity events outside of the job role. The people, at every level of seniority will treat you with respect and from my experience were very pleasant to talk to on a daily basis, it definitely feels like a tight-knit group.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
As previously mentioned, I felt like I was relied on heavily. Multiple aspects of my job were vital to the running of the department and my colleagues were appreciative of this. You are treated as if you were a full time employee, my department especially, took the time to get to know me and even arranged away days based on my interests.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
In terms of guidance, you are given a three week handover for my position - this sets you off on good stead for all the tasks that had to be completed on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. My manager would always be willing to give support when asked for almost immediately. A massive positive for me was also having an immediate supervisor that sat across from me so was always able to answer any queries and helped me settle into the role.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
At the start of the internship, as you are a little slower at using the systems and getting to know your role, you find there is always something to do. The first 4 months went by so quickly, but as the learning curve starts to smooth out it can become slightly quiet during the middle of the month as the bulk of my tasks were situated around month end.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I had sole responsibility for payment to all centres and processing employee expenses. But there were also many opportunities outside of the job role, including working towards strategy 2025 on a Young and Urban project, charity events and assisting the Financial Director on another project. All in all the department were dependent upon me, as my work would contribute to others completing their tasks.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
A major improvement for me was my time management skills, having to balance multiple deadlines on a month by month basis. Also, I believe I have found my leadership style, having an intern come over from Germany for 3 months and do a similar role, I took responsibility in training him in various tasks.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office during the middle of my internship had a makeover, now the office is brighter with white furnishings and departments are slightly sectionalised by glass panes. This does not stop anyone from sharing thoughts and conversation, you don't feel like you have to be quiet. My department even enjoy taking a break together for tea daily to break up the day.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The internship programme has been in place for years, thus they strive to improve on processes year on year. All interns present to HR half way through the placement on what they have enjoyed and what could be improved for the next group of interns. This information is really listened to and acted upon to make sure that PCGB offer competitive placement schemes.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
We have been offered on many occasions the opportunities to take part in training courses, some mandatory and others optional. From legal and GDPR training where you really get to grips with the basics to Personality Profiles where an outside company is brought in to give you insight about yourself and your working style.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Sadly, this is the only part for me that is slightly disheartening. Porsche is an amazing company that has generated a culture that values it's employees and I would be honoured to work for them. However, they have surprisingly small teams and thus, the chances of being offered a full time position become a lot slimmer.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The interns are generally a close bunch, who regularly will plan nights out into town or even to London. Most will ride the bus together to and from work, and occasionally spend time together on the weekends. It helps that we all eat lunch together and socialise during work that has fostered a very close community.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Reading, being situated 30-40 minutes from London can be pricey. If you are planning on finding accommodation in town then you could be looking at between £500-700pcm. General prices for socialising are what you would expect for a busy town centre. Luckily, head office is situated a little further away from the centre in Calcot and accommodation may be cheaper nearer work itself.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
It depends on what you were used to! Reading town centre has two main clubs that are not massive in comparison to most night clubs. There are loads of bustling bars spread across all of town, so you are never spoilt for choice here! Generally, I think there is something for everyone, and if there is not then central London is just a 25 minute train away giving you more options.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
You can always volunteer yourself for Range days or Carrera cup days in which you help out with putting on motorsport events. This is highly recommendable for anyone who is passionate about the brand. This year, the company started a 7-a-side team that is open to anyone in the business, but it would be good if more like this was available.