Meet various shareholders and contribute to the business projects/ propositions within Insurance UK in RBWM
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I really enjoyed my internship, at least it gave me a taste of the retail banking industry. However the quality of your internship does vary by rhe teams you’re put in - a bit of lucky and skillset matching. The best thing is that the team is very supportive and does give interns opportunities to add value to the company!
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I built a close relationship especially with those whom I worked with closely. Team drinks and socials definitely help with that. They are extremely friendly and helpful when you ask for help, or want to chat with them about their work they will take time to do so with you.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
It really varies by managers. All have different work styles as well so some might want to really give you every detail of the task, or some just want to let you do your thing and give you much freedom. It also depends on your own style, whether or not you want that detail. But in my experience in both scenarios and my managers are really good at giving directions.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I was kept fairly busy, to an extent that I’m happy with. I feel that if I felt I was too idle, I would always be able to ask my managers for more work, because there would always be some kind of work to do, whether that be boring admin tasks or value adding ones.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I think there shouldn’t be too much expectation as to the level of responsibility interns are given. At the end of the day, they’re only there for 8 weeks. The tasks I did did add value to the team projects, however of course they could’ve been easily done by another member of the team, I just helped free up their time a bit more.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I certainly learnt a lot of skills, the business side e.g. how a team works, how a bank like HSBC works, flaws and advantages, business strategies, importance of customers, regulations. I’ve also developed personally because the Internship programmes team always arranged development sessions for us, for example ‘presenation masterclass’ or ‘debate sessions’ which really helped us develop soft skills outside of our product/ technical knowledge.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Depending on your location, mine was in Canary Wharf and I loved the professionalism and fun, friendly atmosphere at the same time. We would talk occassionally as a mini break, so it wasn’t a ‘cold atmosphere’ as how most would imagine the Canary Wharf office to be. There was food occassionally too!
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The internship was very organised and structured, at least relative to schemes at other banks. The internship programmes team did a fantastic job at this, and since there was a team responsible for the programme/ solely dedicate their time to it, all questions were answered by the team and everything was ran smoothly.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I think HSBC did invest in interns, and you can tell not only by the financial investment they made in our events or internship itself, but also the mental investment you see from the top management. There were a senior Head that came down just to have lunch with all of the interns, and this really is the perfect example of the high level of value the firm puts in its interns. Our current CEO started as a graduate!
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
The next step forward would be the graduate scheme, which definitely looks quite appealing. The training and skills you gain from the graduate scheme is not easy to find elsewhere and I think the prospects after the scheme certainly looks promising. Especially as I think most of the skills are transferrable.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There are a lot of social events so the interns are able to integrate with each other
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I was placed in London, which you can never complain about! I have always lived in London anyway so not much of a change for me
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
London has great nightlife, but you don’t normally go out on a workday so that leaves you with 7 weekends to enjoy London!
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Yes, depends whether or not you proactively seek those opportunities really! There are sports club or other campaigns e.g. sustainability or other committees which you can get involved in.