• The Role
  • The Company
  • The Culture

    The Role

  • 1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
  • Really enjoyed my years placement at Knorr-Bremse. I was originally on a three-week placement however when I asked if I could stay on for a year, they were very accommodating and accepted. I learned a lot during my time in the Customer Services department and was given my own process improvement project to manage. I attended and organised meetings, interacted and collaborated with members of all departments and gave presentations and updates to members of upper management. Towards the end of the placement, a position opened up in the department I was in and I applied and got the job! I now work here full time and still really enjoy working here. Great place if you want to learn a lot and get loads of experience.


  • 2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
  • Very much so, everyone was very approachable and helpful, and I learned a lot from everyone. Once I got the hang of my role, I did feel a sense that I was a valued part of the team as part of my job was to support the other coordinators with chasing up orders and updating the managers.


  • 3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
  • The training in my department was excellent and really thorough. The managers were both very supportive. I was never micromanaged and never left with nothing to do. I felt I could always come to my Manager/Trainer if I had any questions/problems.


  • 4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
  • In the first week I didn’t have much to do, I was told to start slow and just get used to things. This was probably a good idea as it can sometimes be overwhelming starting a new job at a big company, especially if it’s your first ever job. I did get a bit bored after a while though, so when I expressed this to my Trainer/Manager, they gave me more tasks and from then on I never felt like I had too little/too much to do.


  • 5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
  • I was given a process improvement project which was not customer facing and therefore less stressful and demanding than some of the other roles in the department. Once I felt like I had a good grasp on the project, I asked if I could help with some of the administrative tasks which carry a bit more responsibility. Once I felt I could manage that relatively well, I asked if I could look after one of the smaller accounts and was granted that as well. At no point did I feel I was under too much pressure and never felt bored or had nothing to do.


  • 6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
  • I had already finished my degree by the time I stated with Knorr-Bremse. However, I do plan on perusing further education in Business Management and feel that the skills and experience learned during my placement will be invaluable, not just for my future studies but for my career as well.


    The Company

  • 7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
  • A fun and friendly office environment, lots of banter. Very inclusive and accomodating. It’s often someone’s birthday or leaving do so there’s usually a food buffet out. There is also a Friday fry-up in the canteen which is a big event. Be prepared to put on a few pounds if you work here (I know I did).


  • 8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
  • Very well organised. Everything from my IT equipment to my desk space to my role in the team was organised well before I arrived. We had monthly catch ups with our managers as well as with HR. They even organised for us to have a mentor from a different department meet with us every week, just to have someone from a different team who we could talk to about personal problems or issues at work.


  • 9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
  • Knorr-Bremse organised a two day training seminar for us at a hotel in Swindon (all paid for) where we attended seminars and workshops designed to help us get the best out of our placement as well as giving us tips and training on public speaking, dress code which was really useful. We were also entitled to all the benefits that other employees were entitled to incuding bonuses, pension scheme (if we wanted) and Christmas gifts.


  • 10. What were the perks on your work placement?
  • Flexi Time

    Subsidised Canteen

    Sports and Social Club

    Company Car

    International Travel

    Financial Bonus

    Company Parties/Events

    Working from home



  • 11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
  • There is a graduate scheme in the company where placements can return after their final year at university and get training from all departments before settling into a role in the department of their choosing. I myself was offered a full time role in my department (not a graduate scheme) when a position opened up towards the end of my placement. I passed the interviews and got the job. I am still working here today and still very much enjoy it!


    The Culture

  • 12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
  • Yes, there is a monthly night out in bath organised by Customer Services. The whole office is invited and it’s usually a good turnout. Every year we have a Christmas dinner out as well as a company Christmas party, usually in a rented hotel. There is a football and badminton club and an annual sports day event.


  • 13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
  • Very cheap, especially compared to some of the surrounding cities like Bath and Bristol. Many of my fellow placement students commuted from Trowbridge and Chippenham, both of which are quite inexpensive places to live. Most of us lived as lodgers or in shared houses in the surrounding area. rent in my group ranged from £400 - £475 per month.


  • 14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
  • Bath and Bristol are both relatively quick train rides away and are both excellent for a night out. Only problem would be getting back but a shared taxi ride with mates would only be £30. Trowbridge, Chippenham and Melksham all have lots of pubs if you just fancy a pint or three.


  • 15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
  • There are many sports clubs, the most popular if which are Football and Badminton. There is a Christmas choir organised each year as well as various plays and theatrical productions you can attend/participate in. There are charity projects you can get involved in too. People also organise nights out in Bath, Lunch time walks and weekly team dinners.


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Placement Year (10 Months+)

Administration/Secretarial, Business Intelligence, Business Management, Customer Service, Sales

West Midlands

November 2018

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