I thoroughly enjoyed my placement at Tech Data. You quickly became friends with the people you were working with and were fully assisted when/if you needed any help. The managers were also always looking for things to get you more involved in so you could increase your knowledge and skill set. I can honestly say when it came to the end of the 12 months I was sad to leave.
Overall Tech Data had a very warm environment were people were thankful to anyone that had helped them with a task. During stressful periods of the financial year you could see this effect people's mannerisms, but this is understandable.Tech Data made sure that even the higher roles in the company such as the marketing director still made time for each member of staff. He made sure to come round the office to make sure everyone was happy and acknowledge every individuals work.
The support and guidance provided at Tech Data was amazing. They would make sure to set up training sessions so you would understand the role better. Additionally, managers would constantly check that you were happy with your work load and that there was nothing that you were particularly struggling with. The warm environment meant that you were also felt comfortable going to your manager or supervisors with any questions.
The role that I had in marketing was quite niche and therefore, especially at the start, I didn't have that much work to do and would sometimes find myself bored. Tech Data worked to find more work for me and later on my placement they created a new programme which they had me heavily involved in which meant I always had at least a comfortable amount of work to do.
The further into the placement I got, the more responsibility I was given. Tech Data places a lot of trust in its interns as I was writing a guide to assist with the company integration a couple months in and then co-managed a marketing programme with my manager that had me communicating with our customers directly such as Epson.
I feel placement year is crucial to learn skills that you wouldn't particularly consider such as Microsoft Outlook. Almost every job requires you to make meetings with people and before Tech Data I would not have known how to arrange this unless face-to-face. I also learnt how to use software like SAP that I am sure I will use in my future employments. Working at Tech Data increased my team work abilities, time management and organisation, skills that I know will help assist me in the completion of my degree.
The general atmosphere was great. You made friends very quickly and although during the day you all got on with your work you would have little chats to the people sat near you just to break it up a bit. During the year we had a couple social events outside of work with the marketing team and Tech Data's design team (Swingate). This meant that you were able to get good relationships with everyone in the team so felt comfortable if you ever needed to ask anyone a question regarding work. Additionally the office atmosphere was very encouraging, if you ever vocalised you were struggling with a certain task/activity other employees had a strong faith in you and would help you just the right amount so that you still completed the task yourself.
I felt that the placement set up was well executed. During our first week we were given a timetable that taught us about the company but then also had "buddy" time with other staff to teach us how to complete the tasks we would come across. Tech Data also encouraged you to get to know the other interns through a personality exercise that allowed you to understand the different spectrum of personalities you can get in the workplace and more specifically which type of personalities were in the intern group. I also had monthly meetings with my manager to make sure I was happy with my placement throughout the year. My workload was monitored and when delegating projects the managers would make sure workload was as even as it could be. However, at the start of the placement (when my work type was more niche) I didn't have as much work and would find myself without any at all. During that time of my placement I felt it could have been more organised but Tech Data worked to get me involved in more tasks/projects so that this wasn't an issue.
The human resources department constructed training sessions which would vary from personal traits like time management to skills like Excel. During my placement I was encouraged to do these courses. However I feel that a little bit more could have been offered, whether the company was to create more courses or look at opportunities out of the company for interns to get involved in.
Sports and Social Club
Tech Data provides a great opportunity to gain experience in the field. As Tech Data's marketing department fundamentally works as an agency you learn about a different way of doing marketing that is constantly changing its marketing messaging which I found really interesting.
Tech Data hire around 15 interns and during my year we would constantly have group meet ups. I made some amazing friends during my placement year. You are encouraged to get to know each other through the 'insights' training where you learn about everyone's different personalities. A handful of us lived together and this meant we had somewhere to always communally meet up.
I was one of the interns that lived in the house and our rent didn't include bills so the price that we had to pay was a little bit more than it needed to be but socialising in the area was relatively cheap so it balanced out. There were fun activity places like trampoline parks, bowling, cinema etc. that were comfortable priced. There was a pub near the office that was popular with employees and a spoons in town which, was obviously, very cheap.
Basingstoke has two main clubs/bars and one of them is an over 21 bar. The nightclub (fever) isn't too bad but as Basingstoke is close to Reading I would recommend taking the really cheap train to Reading for a night out. The last train back is quite early in the evening but if there is enough of you, splitting a taxi is very cheap.
The company did have a social club that had monthly activities. The intern group tended to make our own plans outside of work that included the activities listed above.
Placement Year (10 Months+)
Advertising, Business Management, English, Marketing
14th July 2018