As a placement student in Project Management, you will work closely with clients and consultants delivering projects through all stages of the construction lifecycle. Your responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:
- Working with clients to establish their needs
- Preparing tender documents
- Contributing to the project execution plan, including the logistics planning and scheduling
- Working closely with the design team from concept to delivery of contractor documentation
- Working closely with the project team and cost managers to ensure all strategies implemented work effectively and efficiently
- Monitoring project progress and preparing progress reports to update relevant parties
- Monitoring and reporting on budgets and cash flow
- Monitoring any potential risks to the project and looking for mitigations where possible
- Monitoring and reviewing of health and safety practices
- Providing general support and assistance to the Project Manager.
Your work base will be flexible and could be in one of Mace offices, at a client’s office or facility, or in a designer’s studio. You will gain exposure to all aspects of project delivery from concept design, through to construction, commissioning, validation handover and into operation
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I have fully enjoyed my placement at Mace. The placement is well planned and Mace provide a good range of training and development sessions. Over the duration of my placement I have been involved in several projects, working with some of Mace’s key strategic clients and has allowed me to grow my professional network
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Despite feeling nervous at the beginning of my placement, my colleagues quickly helped me feel at ease and supported me, they made me feel part of the team from day one. As I have moved between projects, I have had to integrate into different teams quickly, but the support from Mace and colleagues has made this easy
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
Although I do not regularly see my line manager while I am on project, we arranged frequent meetings throughout my placement to check on my progress and ensure the work I was doing was relevant and beneficial to both myself and the company. Between these meetings, I was assured that I could arrange a chat by phone at any time.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
The workload has fluctuated over the duration of my placement. Some days, I would spend a whole day in meetings which would leave me with less time to complete work. I have developed my time management skills through the balancing of meetings and producing work. Most of the time the workload was manageable.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Being thrown into an active client environment from the offset has given me invaluable first-hand experience into construction and project management. Over the placement I have been accountable for delivering specific outcomes for clients, such as reports, presentations and progress trackers. I am supported by my colleagues to ensure I am happy with the responsibility I have been given.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I have developed my skills on placement through a mixture of training sessions and one the job learning. The Emerging Talent team hold 4 development sessions over the course of the year at the head office in London. Each session covered a different topic to aid our development, including professionalism, BIM and presentation skills.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
As I have moved across projects, I have been in multiple offices over the 12 month of my placement. The Head Office is a buzzing corporate office in The City with a real sense of being part of a large firm. Client offices have ranged from modern, pleasant offices to portacabins on site. There is a good sense of team spirit in the site offices.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The onboarding process was well organised. On my first day I attended a welcome meeting at the head office in London with all Industrial and Summer Placement students, with talks given by the HR department and various directors from across Mace. The subsequent training and development sessions are well organised too.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
Alongside the training and development sessions held by the Emerging Talent team, Mace invests in placement students by offering the same training they offer to full time employees. Over the 12 months on placement, I have undertaken the same mandatory training requirements as those required by full time employees. I have also gained a Project Management qualification which was provided by Mace.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Above 25 days holiday
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I am due to have my End of Year review with my line manager in the coming weeks to assess my progress and development, and conclude whether I am to be offered a place on the Graduate Scheme. Initial discussions with my line manager have suggested that I am to be offered a place to return.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The training and development sessions offer the opportunity to meet with other placement students, which are good as most of the students are based in different locations. We regularly go for networking drinks after the sessions. In the regional offices there are social events every few months, and often colleagues go for drinks after work on Fridays.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
As part of the Placement, students are encouraged to engage in charitable endeavors. The group I was part of chose to partake in a Tough Mudder challenge for Myeloma UK. This was a great opportunity to get together with the placement students outside of working hours having a fun day out for a good cause.