An 8 week summer internship with Accenture. I was sent to a project in the health & public services division of consulting.
I spent 8 weeks at Accenture for a consulting internship, I enjoyed my time there but to be honest I did not learn as much as I expected. I was sent to Newcastle for a project Tues-Thurs and worked from home on Fridays. However due to the lack of organisation by Accenture, I was unable to get a client laptop during my placement so I ended up doing little consulting work and instead my manager struggled to find me something useful to do.
The analysts on the project I was assigned to were extremely helpful and were really friendly to me throughout the internship. They answered any questions I had regarding the company and the project and gave their honest opinion on the culture of Accenture. I was also assigned a buddy who was with me the entire time of the internship.
My manager didn't interact with me much at all, it was mainly my buddy who was an analyst that reviewed my work. But once again I was not given any consulting related work so it was very difficult for any substantial feedback to be given to me. I only did very basic tasks so there was little need for support and guidance by managers.
I was usually very bored at my internship as I did not have a client laptop. I have reflected this to my manager but there was nothing we could do because it was up to the client to process my security clearance which could take up to one month so I was never cleared even though I spent two months there. However, I do know that some other interns were a lot busier than myself, it completely depends on the project you are assigned to.
Without a client laptop I had little serious responsibility. The only key project I was a part of was to organise a social event for the team there. I did not have responsibility within any of the actual consulting/client work which was very disappointing.
The intitial one week training helped me understand more about how the projects worked as it mimicked the situation. The excel training was also key as a lot og my work involved working with Excel and knowing how to use it effectively. Other skills were learnt on the job and my colleagues helped me learn how to do certain tasks and use certain softwares.
People took their work relatively seriously and most had lunch at their desk at the client site. Because most people are based in london, travelling up to newcastle would take away 3 hours of working time so most people were very hard working at the office and tried to work on the train as well. People were friendly to others, managers were approachable and engaging during meetings, it was a nice place to work at.
My manager and buddy did not know who I was and when I was due to arrive at the client site until the Friday before I started. I was told on Friday at around 4pm during my induction week that I had to book train tickets and hotels for Monday in Newcastle. I was not given any information about my role, my buddy or my manager or who I was supposed to travel with. Everything was arranged before my manager left work on Friday and it was extremely hectic. When I got there, my manager had no idea that I did not have security clearance yet and we spent two full days trying to process everything but in the end I still never got a client laptop. I have reflected this to my manager and the HR team but by then it was too late to find me another project.
In terms of costs, I think Accenture invested a lot in me in that they paid for all of my expenses and travel when I left London to go to the client site. However, I was not given any sort of formal training apart from the one day of Excel training. The organisation of my internship was poor so I did not feel that the firm was truly investing in me and wanted me to return to Accenture. We received some introduction to the company during the induction week but it was not in detail and still very confusing for me when I first started at the client site.
I was offered a graduate job after my summer internship and so were most of the interns. I believe that Accenture is a large company and there are many projects you can get involved in but it felt like it was down to luck where you were assigned and how good your future prospects would be. In fact, most analysts told me that after 2 or 3 years if you were not promoted your bonus would end and most people would leave, there is a seriously high turnover rate which does not sound very promising. Accenture is extremely bottom heavy and it sounded very difficult to progress through the ranks in the company.
It depends from project to project, I was lucky in that the project I was assigned to had a lot of young graduates so most people did activities together after work, especially if we were away from London (where we were all based). I have heard from other interns that they were the only young employees so the social life was quite dull. However, you essentially have zero interactions with other interns apart from the first week and the last day of the internship unless you are with them on the same project.
Being based in Newcastle/on client site meant that you get expenses paid for so it was great. I got my dinner, hotels and transport all paid for by Accenture. However, it also meant that I rent a place in London and didn't spend much time there during the week so that was the down side of being at a client site.
Nightlife in Newcastle is no where near as good as London, also it's weeknights where I would be there so it didn't really help. We did go to bars once or twice with all the analysts on the project but not any big night outs.I am not a big party type person though.
I didn't hear about many activity opportunities, they had one or two sports nights but I was never informed until an hour before because I wasn't on the client email list so it was a bit disappointing. Any other activities that were organised by analysts were not with Accenture so I was informed of those privately.