1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
My time at HPE was challenging, but incredibly rewarding. When I joined the company, there were a lot of changes being put in place, which left me to my own devices for the best part of 6 months. However, moving into the new year I found myself being given the opportunities and responsibilities that meant I could develop myself.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I cannot praise my team and colleagues enough for all the support and time they have given me through the year. HPE is definitely a company that is defined by the kind nature and helpfulness of its employees. Everyone I have met has been willing to help, and has gone above and beyond to make me feel part of the company.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
Unfortunately, given the changes going on in the first half of my year, my manager changed after 4 months, and then I was left without a manager for another 3 months. This meant I had to self-guide to develop myself for the majority of my early days. However, once I reported to a new manager I was given the best support and guidance.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
My job role was in sales, so my day-to-day tasks varied massively depending on quarter and weekday. This meant that sometimes I was extremely busy, and others I was finding myself without things to do. However, in this situation I think its important to be proactive in seeking work to keep you busy, or turning things down if you have too much on.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given huge amounts of responsibility within my placement, which not only made me feel like a member of the team, but also valued for my contributions. HPE offered my the opportunity to work as a respected employee within their organisation, doing a job that is required for the companys success.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I believe that the job has given me huge amounts of practical and replicable skills. I'm unsure as to whether they will help with my university studies, but they will most definitely help me when I come to look for jobs in the future. I know the job role I want to go into, so have ensured I have built up a bank of the skills needed to succeed in this role.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Unfortunately, the office was never very busy during my year, which meant there wasn't much of an atmosphere. I believe this may be down to the changes made within the company. However, I was able to visit other offices which had an incredible buzz and a much better atmosphere than my home office.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The placement was set up very well at the start, with training around the company and what to expect throughout the year. However, I feel like the attention around developing the interns as a group dropped off after a few months and I started to forget that I was here as an intern and not a full time employee.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
My team at HPE definitely invested a huge amount of time and resources to ensure I developed in my goals. I was very keen on achieving certain things within my year, and my manager truly did everything within his power to give me everything I needed to progress my development.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Sadly, there has not been much highlighted to us about what our future prospects might be within the company. I would love to work back at HPE in the future, as I really value the people and think this is a key component, however, I would have liked more information around what the next steps were.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Again, due to the changes going on within the company, a lot of interns felt out of place and stopped coming in to the office. This had a knock on effect with all aspects of the social side, as there was nothing social within the office or outside of it.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
The cost was relatively average I believe, but it is located very close to London so this does have an affect of the rental prices. However, all company travel can be expensed, and there are lots of perks including team meals out! Overall, it is better than London but more expensive than other areas.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Due to the lack of social scene within the intern community, it meant that I never really experienced the nightlife. However, on the occasions that we did go out, the nightlife was good and convenient to get to via public transport. The company isn't situated in a big city, so there will always be restrictions on nightlife!
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were lots of charity events, and volunteering activities to get involved in. However, outside of that there wasn't much that was advertised to us outside of work. I'm not sure if that was because we were interns, or because this isn't something the company offers e.g. there is no sports and social club.