Assistant Manager for approximately 6 months, helping run the store
Project work at Head Office with various departments
Shadowing Area Manager and assisting them
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my placement. To begin with, it was difficult to adjust to the fast paced environment of ALDI. However, once I settled into the role and the expectations at ALDI, I really enjoyed the challenges and level of responsibility given to me. I especially enjoyed working within the different departments at the regional distribution centre completing a variety of project work.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Very. On the placement you are given a lot of responsibility from day one for example doing your management training in store within the first 6 weeks of beginning. I felt valued as ALDI and my colleagues entrusted me to make key decisions such as doing the orders for the stores and dealing with customers on a day to day basis.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
Although the training plan given by ALDI is very detailed and covers everything you need to know, as ALDI is such a fast-paced environment to work in, sometimes the training plan can fall to way side and not be prioritised. For example, when my store manager was sick during my training, my training plan wasn't picked up by anybody and so my training was behind from that point on.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Extremely, but in a good way. ALDI is renowned for its efficiencies and that's not just when it comes to getting their stock! Every day working is different. Working with the different people and different challenges in store and also working in Head Office with the various departments completing different tasks.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Within the first six weeks of my placement, I was given the keys to one of the busiest stores in the region. I completed my 6 week management training and then worked as an Assistant Manager in store for 6 months. After this, I worked with the various departments within the regional distribution centre and made decisions that had an impact across the whole region.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
All of the skills I learnt and developed on this placement I will be able to use in all aspects of life. From working as a team in store to hit our Key Performance Indicators to working independently/ in a small group during our projects. One way in which the placement linked to my degree was in doing the orders, looking at the supply and demand of certain goods at seasonal points and using current stock levels and sales data in order to produce accurate orders that mean all lines will be on sale but limit waste simultaneously.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere varied from in store to Head Office. In store was more fast-paced and frantic as everybody was working to get everything done on time for the customers. In head office the atmosphere was slightly more relaxed (maybe due to the lack of customers), however everybody still works to meet deadlines. In general, everybody I have come into contact with whilst working for ALDI has been very welcoming and open to any questions and always offering help and advice which led to a good morale!
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Very. There was a very detailed structure to my training plan where I spent certain weeks working with different departments and at different stores completing a variety of tasks. The only way in which it wasn't well organised was in the fact that sometimes I was moved from a department to another in order to complete some work which was more of a priority for the business.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
Although the training plan was in place, during my management training, my manager went off sick for an extended period of time and my training was forgotten about somewhat as we worked to get the store into shape. Other than this, the training was well detailed and if you needed any help with anything then everybody would be willing to help you with this.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
ALDI is one of the most competitive and rewarding graduate schemes and one in which I am hoping to be a part of.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
I got on very well with my fellow placement students. However, as we were all based in different stores for the first 7 months of placement it was difficult to arrange to meet. When we all started working in head office together we all got on very well and often kept in touch outside of work.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
The cost of living was small for me as I lived at home with my parents - however I believe the cost of living within the area is also good. The cost of socialising was also reasonable depending upon where you went with the choices of Liverpool and Chester among others.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
With a choice of places to go like Chester and Liverpool, the nightlife is always a good scene.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Whilst working in store it was difficult to get involved in any activities outside of work. this is because you could be working any 5 days of the week any week and at varying times within the day. When I moved to working at head office, working Monday to Friday, there were various opportunities outside of work, for example I played 5-a-side football on a Monday evening and played golf most weekends.