1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Thoroughly enjoyed working with my team, made me feel very welcome. My role itself was really interesting and I was given the chance to work in various subteams to improve my understanding of different areas. My work was challenging and diverse and I was always given the support that I needed.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I was given lots of responsibility right from the start of my placement, and this made me feel like I was trusted and valued. My opinions and ideas were always taken on board by not only my line manager but my whole team, and I was allowed to explore different ideas independently whenever I saw fit.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
My line manager organised weekly 121s with me where I was free to discuss any projects I had on, and then was helped to prioritise this work. I was always asked to set time based goals and to constantly re-evaluate how realistic they were. I was also regularly asked if there was anything further my line manager could do to support me. I built a strong relationship with my line manager and felt I could communicate any difficulties to him when required.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Due to the nature of my role, the work-load fluctuated, but overall I felt I was in control of work-life balance. Some weeks were busier than others, but whenever I felt like I had too much on my line manager helped me to prioritise my tasks and redistribute work when necessary. Some days I did feel like I didn't have enough to do, but I was comfortable in communicating this to my line manager and he made sure to find something new I could work on.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a lot of responsibility from the start of my placement, and felt I was given a lot of challenging, independent work. I was always given direction when I needed it, but the trust my line manager and rest of my team had in me made me feel like a valuable part of the team.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I feel that the skills I have developed over this year have been invaluable, and these are skills which I will carry throughout the rest of my working life. I don't think that these skills will aid in the rest of time at University, but I view my degree as a stepping stone to a career, so I am happy with the training I have been offered in this placement.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
There was never a time where I felt unhappy in the office. My team are very friendly and supportive, and even during busy and stressful times, the morale remains high and the atmosphere is generally very positive. I am aware that not all IPs have found this to be true, however, and I do feel I have been very lucky in the team I landed in.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Overall I am happy with the organisation of the placement, though I do feel there were areas for improvement. I started my placement 3 months after most IPs due to extenuating circumstances, and on arrival I spent a long time talking to IT to set up accesses and fix issues, which I feel could have easily been sorted beforehand. The communication to IPs regarding the graduate programme was fairly delayed. I appreciate that structural changes were being made, but I feel IPs should have been informed of this instead of waiting in the dark.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
My line manager organised monthly catchups with me to discuss my personal development and to discuss actions to progress my development plan. In this sense, I feel my team were very engaged in my development. The firm itself didn't seem to mind how much I developed, however. I needed to complete a GDW training course which was paid for, but this was mandatory. No such training courses for Le Mans or other platforms, and no other masterclasses were advertised or encouraged.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I believe the skills I have developed over the course of my placement year have put me at an advantage over external candidates in applying to the graduate programme or indeed any analyst role within LBG. I think that this is mainly as a result of my own initiative and motivation to challenge myself, and am not convinced the placement year
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There have been a few social events outside of work with IPs, and these have been a lot of fun. I do feel that throughout the year these have been less often and fewer people have attended.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Fairly cheap to live in Cardiff. Housing and food are fairly cheap compared to the rest of the UK. Having gone to University in Cardiff, this is something that encouraged me to stay in this city.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nightlife is active and varied - lots of pubs and bars as well as a few good clubs with regular events.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were a few Charity days held that were optional and were a lot of fun to get involved in. Other than that, not much else.