I analysed the total amount of fraudulent transactions which occurred each day for the Fraud Insight & Analytics team; using coding and Excel skills to create reports which would be sent to senior stakeholders; so they know where to focus their efforts on preventing fraud.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I thoroughly enjoyed my placement year with Lloyds Banking Group. I have learned some invaluable skills, especially in computing and coding; whilst learning a bit about the risk and fraud industries. The work was interesting and varied slightly on a day to day basis, whilst the office working environment was quite relaxed and never too stressful.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt extremely valued by my colleagues, they were welcoming when I first joined the team, always offering to put their knowledge and expertise forward in order to help me develop my own skills and understanding. As my placement year progressed I felt like a more vital member of the team and this was shown as I was trusted with larger and more important pieces of work as I progressed.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I had a line manager (Band E) and also another supervisor (Band D). I had weekly catch up calls with the Band D colleague, who knew my day to day role and the responsibilities which come with it, this was a great opportunity to ask questions on any current pieces of work, as well as using the time to develop my understanding and receive additional work. Meanwhile my line manager was always available for support and clarification on pieces of work.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
In my particular role there was BAU (Business As Usual) work which would have to be completed every day, which would take up a large portion of my typical working day. However I would receive weekly pieces of work from my manager/supervisor to also work on during quieter parts of the day. As well as answering and responding to any additional requests from stakeholders regarding certain reports I produce as part of BAU. I became increasingly more busy towards the end of my placement as I was able to take on and understand more of the complex pieces of work.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I started off my placement with little responsibility as I learned about the role I had entered. However after being sent on a training course I was rewarded with an increase of responsibility in terms of the day to day work I was involved with. During the second half of my placement I took on many more large projects and pieces of work, and began to work more individually as confidence in my skills improved.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
At the start of my placement I completed a 4 day coding course, which was needed for my role. This immediately improved my knowledge of coding and I was able to develop my understanding of the work/reports produced within my role. As well as this I have massively improved my overall computing skills, especially Microsoft Excel - again this learning was enhanced through another training course, which was online. Furthermore becoming a faster typist from the practice of sending numerous emails each day. I believe these skills will definitely enhance my studies in final year, as well as being transferable skills to take with me in my future career.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere in my office was okay, I worked within a fairly small team however I got along well with all members of the team. The atmosphere would depend on which colleagues were working on a particular day, with colleagues having different working patterns. However the social side in terms of placement studies was very good. With roughly 20 placement students at the same site as myself, I was able to make friends easily.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The work placement was organised very well, there was a clear structure in place, and a clear role available for all placement students. Communication before my placement started was very clear in terms of contract, and starting date. As well as this I had a 6 month and 12 month review/meeting with the lead organiser from the contracting company.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
Lloyds Banking Group immediately showed their investment in myself, as they sent me on a coding training course, which was needed to be able to complete day to day work within my role. They were keen to build up my coding and excel skills so i could complete BAU work confidently and independently. As well as this they were happy to allow me to receive any additional shadowing from other areas.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
As a direct result of completing the industrial placement year, I have had an interview for the Graduate scheme which has saved me from applying online with other graduates from outside of LBG, and meant I do not need to attend an assessment day. The skills I have collected this year will be transferrable to many other roles inside and outside of LBG.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Yes, there was roughly 20 other placement students in the same location as me. This made me feel more relaxed when I started as there were many opportunities to meet people in a similar position to me. We were all introduced into the working environment together and took part in many activities together including fundraising/charity work raising money for MHUK, playing in the LBG football team and socialising after work.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Leeds - The north is way cheaper than down south!
I paid roughly £95pw for my house (inc. bills) and would tend to socialise most weekends with other placement students.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Being a city with three different universities the nightlife in Leeds is fantastic, there is always an opportunity for a night out. There is a vast array of pubs, bars and nightclubs suitable for anyone. The difficult part is finding a compromise between partying and waking up early for work the next day!
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
During my placement there were many opportunities to take part in activities outside of the day to day work. I attended 2 'Away Days' where our team would visit a conference in a different city for the day to learn more about different areas within Risk/Fraud. As well as this I was involved in 2 major charity events with many other placement students raising >£2000 as a group over the whole year. There were many other learning and development opportunities such as taking part in behavioural experiments, and shadowing other colleagues from other areas of the bank.