1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Great London location at bishopsgate, especially for the summer. Was placed in a really great team so enjoyed the office atmosphere. There was lots of opportunity to get involved in things outside of day to day work through internal grad council events and they encourage you to also shadow other teams.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
My team worked on quite separate things from person to person which meant there was not need for much collaboration outside for them giving me help and learning along the way. However everyone was nice on a human level and there was good conversation each day in the office in general.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
My manager was very supportive and honest which I really valued, when I arrived she had already thought about projects she would like me to work on and made a point of introducing me to everyone. She worked from home at least 2 days a week though so some weeks I didn't have much interaction with her.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I had been given my own separate projects to work on which kept me quite busy at the beginning, however after the projects things were more up in the air so I found myself trying to stretch out the work and fill the time so I was always doing something. If I had spare time I conducted extra research.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was responsible for a project and analysis that would hopefully be fed straight back to areas of the business. This was completely new work so I felt I had been trusted with the responsibility. However it would have been fun to be directly involved with the work of other people too.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I study chemistry and was in the finance stream, so I didn't find the technical information was that which I could carry forward, as I was unsure whether I would want to enter finance or not. However the basic skills of working in a larger company and how to effectively communicate and present were useful.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Sometimes quite quiet in the office as we were in the middle of relocation and restructuring, so there were empty desks, especially on days that were popular for working from home. There were a few times when I was the only one in my team in that day as a coincidence.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Sometimes it wasn't clear for the line manager what the role should consist of or specific tasks that needed to be completed. It works well if you are proactive in organising your own shadowing in other teams, as there is no official process at the moment for getting that different experience.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
The training and development really depended on what you chose to get involved with, and also the team into which you are placed. There were some learning sessions put on by early careers and the graduate council which helped and some of them were practically useful like an excel workshop.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Unfortunately the structure of the finance grad scheme means I will probably not be able to take it, due to the need to spend a year in Edinburgh with the teams there. I wish I had known about this beforehand as it may have impacted my choice of steam. However would consider transferring onto a different one.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There aren't too many intern social events officially organised but those that are staying in London were good at meeting up and doing things after work together. Again it depends how actively you involve yourself with the social scene. It also depends on which location you are placed in as to the ease of this.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
London is expensive for food and travel, so things can add up quite quickly. Therefore I would definitely recommended thinking carefully about trying to bring in your own food etc if you are trying to save money, but there are some good discount apps around too that make it cheaper.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
There are lots of bars and restaurants near the office such as in spitalfields market which were great. Also has good links with other parts of London to get to go an do some different things such as the theatre etc. Also near Shoreditch which offers a different set of clubs etc
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were a few 'extra curricular' events for teams but there wasn't much in the way of wider sports activities etc. There are some networks but it was hard to get fully involved in these due to only being in the teams for 10 weeks. Would be great to have more options.