1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
During my placment at Prysmian I really enjoyed getting to know the people I worked with, both colleagues and customers. The sales office I worked in was very chatty and had a friendly atmosphere.
The work was challenging to begin with but you quickly get good at your job and get to know your customers.
The work can sometimes be dry and repetitive so you need to be prepared to ask often for more challenging opportunties.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
My direct team was absolutely fantastic, a great group of hardworking and friendly people. Equally happy to help you as to chat to you.
The company's departments could do with integrating a bit more as it can be strange seeing people everyday but not knowing their names or their job roles.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
My manager was excellent at being supportive and was always happy to help with any issues. She made sure to have one on one catchups with members of her team every month or so.
HR on the other hand have a long way to go in learning to be supportive.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Workflow varied massively throughout the year, some days were exceptionally busy and others were exceptionally quiet. You could always ask for more work and there is a lot to learn about the SAP system in place.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
As the year went on the amount of responsibilty you have definitely increases as you take on new challenged like more valuable quotes and orders.
However you really are on the bottom tier and there is not much freedom to make decisions. You are often put on the front line to give customers bad news or have to let them down without an explanation as your superiors have not given you one. Be prepared for customers to think you personally have let them down.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
This year for me has delveloped my soft skills more than my academic knowledge. It has built my confidence with people interdepartmentally and in regards to customer relations. I have also learned how to use the very marketable to employers SAP system fluently and gained valuable office skills.
Mostly it has taught me how to navigate a proffesional environment.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere in the sales office was fantastic. There was lots of chat and everyone is easy and approachable.
The actual office environment could do with a spruce up especially for a blue chip company. More natural lighting would do wonders as there is only a few windows on one wall.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The job I was doing was well organised thanks to my manager who helped me every step of the way and made sure I knew the structure of the job.
There are only two opportunties which are solely for placment students: our induction day and Children in Need fundraiser. There really could be a better placement scheme in place to inspire the students.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
My manager gave me as many opportunities as possible with the resources she had avaliable.
Further than that there was very little investment from the wider company. It feels as though they are very much aware you are only there for a year and don't encourage you to return after you have left.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I can not see myself returning to the company as there are very few opportunties for progression in the area of business I am interested in.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There was a good social scene as long as you made an effort with other people.
There are good nights out in Southampton and meeting up with people from work was great fun but could be tricky if you didn't live close by.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Student accomodation was slightly cheaper than most areas but do your reasearch before choosing a house as there are some awful ones out there.
Nights out at the weekend are not cheap either.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
In Eastleigh there is no nightlife however there is plenty in Southampton.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
A few sports like golf and rowing were organised outside of work but that is all we are aware of.