Found it difficult to settle at first given that all placement students started at various times (ranging from early July to September) but from what I understand, this has been tackled this year. Found the job enjoyable once I was settled and felt I had reasonable responsibility/challenge.
It's a big company so don't think it will ever have a 'family' feel, but certainly felt supported and valued as an employee. Bigger teams (e.g. sales, marketing) seemed much more close knit and sociable (more team activities, team days out etc.) than some of the smaller ones.
Received a lot of support throughout the placement from colleagues of various departments.
Really comes in waves - some periods are hectic e.g. pre-Christmas but other times are very quiet. Think a huge part of the job is being able to seek out your own opportunities and using your own intuitive to establish where you can help out or what you can work on yourself during these quiet times because you're expected to keep yourself busy and not rely on others to be told what to do.
Expected amount of responsibility. Lots of opportunities to demonstrate your skills if you look for them, but I think you're always sheltered from any sort of major responsibility. Never felt out of my depth or that I was completely out of my comfort zone in terms of the decisions I was asked to make on my own.
Think a placement year is invaluable in helping you to get a job further down the line once you enter the graduate year. Would always, always recommend people do one purely for the advantage they will have over others when it comes to getting the next job.
Quite relaxed and friendly, a healthy work/life balance is a huge part of the Danone culture and we were encouraged to take regular breaks, play table tennis/table football in the office, and celebrate our own and others' achievements regularly. In our team we had a dedicated 'fun society' who organised regular team nights out so nice and sociable. Free yogurt and water helps keep morale high too!
Had a long handover (4 weeks when I took over the role, 3 weeks when I passed it on to my replacement) so lots of time accounted for to be able to teach/learn the job before having to do it on your own. Felt like it lacked slightly in terms of training opportunities - we had one presentation workshop for placement students but other than that had no other formal learning opportunities which was a shame.
As mentioned previously, very few formal learning opportunities. We were allowed to take part in an insights profile session which helped us to learn more about our personalities/how we should work but not much more than this.
Sports and Social Club
Above 25 days holiday
Brilliant company to work for from what I've experienced, very dedicated to growing their own employees and seem to really encourage career growth in employees (above placement level).
Absolutely - think I have definitely made life long friends from my placement but this was completely down to us and not really aided very much by the company. Think we had one set of drinks arranged once all placements had started for us all to meet, but after that it was up to us. Would have been nice to have a few more 'placement only' activities organised by the company in the early days.
Based in west London so very expensive! Luckily the pay was good so I didn't at any point feel worried about not being able to afford rent/living costs but the first few months were definitely a bit of a squeeze, especially given the huge deposits needed for a room in London.
Poor. West London isn't a great nightlife area from my experience, so we always headed central/East/Camden areas if we wanted a better night out, which bumps up the cost in terms of travel.
Loads! It's based in a business park which invests a lot of money into making sure employees enjoy where they work. Loads of lunchtime clubs and activities on the park - running club, nail bar, netball, zumba, a gym, football etc.
Placement Year (10 Months+)
Administration/Secretarial, Arts/Entertainment/Media, Banking/Finance, Consumer Products/FMCG, Design, E-Business, Financial Management
12th September 2018