1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I thoroughly enjoyed my placement at Nomura. The placement consists of one training week and three, three week rotations which I feel is enough to get an understanding of an area. There are also a variety of other things set such as weekly challenges done in groups and a trading game.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I think this is an odd question as it is very difficult to feel valued on a markets internship, as you are not actually allowed to trade or to sell anything due to regulation, and even if you could you wouldn't know a product in enough detail after three weeks in order to do so. Aside from this, how much desks valued you depended a lot on if they were hiring, in my opinion.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
We were assigned a buddy (junior colleague) and a mentor (more senior colleague) as well as having a direct manager on each rotation. We also all had a HR contact, with reviews at the end of each rotation, and also suggested catch ups in the middle of each rotation. The support and guidance available was good.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
There was a variety in terms of business, on the whole I was not bored and was only sometimes too busy. There were times when the combination of weekly challenges, trading games and desk work was all going on at once and it became somewhat of a balancing act between that, as well as shadowing people, coffees, product breakfasts etc but always manageable if staying a few extra hours when needed.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Not a lot of responsibility, as mentioned above it is difficult to give responsibility in a markets internship when due to regulation you can't actually take any responsibility by traidng or talking to clients, it is much more important to understand the areas and to demonstrate your understanding through presentations etc.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
There is no doubt that the skills I have learnt will help me should I undertake another internship or for a job in the future. I have learnt a lot both technically and in terms of expected conduct on an internship such as this. As part of my degree I can take a financial markets module, so my knowledge gained here should be beneficial for that.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere varied greatly across the floor, in general it was a nice atmosphere. Some teams were clearly very chatty and got along well as friends, regularly socialising together, others had more of a work only relationship, I would not describe it as dull or uncomfortable though, a range from pleasant to fun.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
There was a week of training at the start of the internship, focussed on a variety of basic markets knowledge as well as two days of excel training which was very useful. I felt as though the company were invested in me and how I was doing throughout the internship.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Future employment prospects are very appealing, I think Nomura is a nice sized bank to learn it, the trading floor is on one floor and I think the company wants you to learn and develop. Should I be offered a job in an area that I am interested in I would accept.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Interns semi-regularly went out for drinks/nights out in addition to the drinks arranged by HR. In terms of a 'social scene' amongst colleagues, this depended massively on the team, some went out socialising for drinks together, others did not. Some did but only as part of client events, one of which I was invited to.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I managed to find a very reasonably priced flat, however I had to pay two rents all summer (one at my university location and one in London) so this negated any concept of reasonable pricing. The cost of socialising depends on where you go, spoons is reasonable but it is also possible to accidentally find yourself spending over £9 on a small glass of wine.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The Thursday drinks on the terrace are very enjoyable and reasonably priced, I also attended a few bars in the area, all of which were enjoyable, some more pricy than others, I did not attend clubs in the area so I cannot comment on that but I know fellow interns went out to clubs so they can't have been terrible.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?