1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Working with Gist was extremely enjoyable due to a varied workload and due to the business placing a large focus on the employees. This created a great atmosphere within the office, making it enjoyable to go to work. Gist has given me many opportunities to succeed. All in all a great place to work.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Gist Ltd places a genuine focus on its employees and as such creates a great atmosphere in the office, with many avenues for support and guidance throughout your placement. A number of team events/meetings ensured I was introduced and got to know all members of my team, making settling in and subsequently working with them easy.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
A clear management structure meant a solid foundation for me to begin my placement on. Support came from the department head, as well as my line manager. The support was not limited to 'managers' however, rather all members in the team were willing to provide support and guidance. This was to ensure the placement could be as successful as possible.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
With a project based work load you can expect to have peaks and troughs in regards to 'busyness', however mixed with a few daily tasks it meant my work load was kept at a decent level. There were a couple of frustrating periods were work was scarce, however they were always followed by busy and productive periods when new projects came around.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Gist gave me numerous opportunities each with a large amount of responsibility. I always had specific tasks to achieve with it being my responsibility to deliver the required results, always however with sufficient support. Also being put in charge of specific weekly tasks throughout the year meant I was solely responsible for the task being delivered to an acceptable standard.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I received a number of key work skills throughout the year, mostly through on the job training and just learning as I went along. I learnt skills both in my specific area of work/study and also general work skills which could be transferred to any workplace. These are skills which I really value and will undoubtedly be helpful going forward.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere in the office was very enjoyable with a real 'buzz' around the place. The office felt busy and productive which resulting in a motivating place to work. Colleagues were chatty but also focused, resulting in a nice balance - not many people want to work in silence. It made Gist a great place to work.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The work placement was set up well with the company ready for me on day one. This included all IT access being set up so I could use relevant systems etc, a door pass was available and a desk was prepared. As the role revolved around project based work there is only so much preparation that can be done, however some basic introductions had been set up and throughout the placement a work pipeline was set up to attempt to negate quiet periods.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
The company ensured that I worked on a variety of projects to expose me to as many business areas and types of work as possible. I was also in regular conversation with my manager discussing possible opportunities and whether I wanted to work in other departments or see something specific etc.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Gist has numerous graduate schemes that are related to the placements they offer. As such I have always felt that there are appealing future employment opportunities at Gist. Furthermore conversations with HR regarding such opportunities are very open and encouraging. Given the substantial nature of the graduate schemes their are plenty of opportunities to consider.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The social scene with fellow placement students and graduate scheme colleagues was brilliant. Numerous events organised by HR ensured we were all given the opportunity to get to know each other and engage in fun events like segway riding and advanced laser tag. Also organised were meals out and hotel stays, as such we all formed strong bonds and off the back of this have organised other meet ups.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
The cost of living in Basingstoke is fairly high given the area of the country in which it is situated, however relatively it is well priced with other local areas having a higher cost of living. Local universities in Reading and Winchester means there are plenty of student nights etc where prices are lower etc.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
The nightlife in the local area is quite varied with a few different places to go out. Given the proximity of London there is always the opportunity to go out there, as well as more local places such as Reading where there are a number of clubs and bars, and with a University situated it is often busy.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Due to a good social scene within the office there were social events outside of the office. These included nights out for example. Furthermore there were a few sporting opportunities such as the Gist Olympics (Placing a few sports against the other sites) and playing 5 a side football locally.