Organising weekly meetings and taking minutes. "Overseeing quality projects" but more like watching my manager do that and then just making PowerPoints for him.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
The placement was boring and there were often times when I would have little to no work to do. Even when I did have work to do, it was generally menial (making PowerPoint presentation, or sifting through Excel). I did not have a project or anything assigned to me so my main job revolved around being a glorified PA for a General Manager.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
One of the main issues with the placement is that I had no colleagues, so I spent most of my time working alone. I did find other interesting tasks to get involved with but this was only because I had so little supervision and work that I could just dissapear for hours at a time and go to another department in the plant.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I was really given nothing. My supervisor (a General Manager for about thirty people) was never around and always in meetings. The only contact I would have with him would him telling me what he wanted made on PowerPoint, who he would like me to email and invite to meetings, and to see the last meetings minutes.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
There were times I would have literally nothing to do, but then there were also times where I would be super busy. The issue was that the tasks I was busy with were not worthy of an internship. The other projects that I picked up totally off my own back kept me busy.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I wasn't really given any responsibilty. Yes I arranged an important meeting, sending out the agenda weekly and writing the minutes. Preparing the slides for the presentations in meetings is again an important job but it was not like I was dictating what was going to be presented. So I was given things that had to be done quickly but no real responsibility on relavant tasks for an internship.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
Firslty, I did not receive any formal training. I did not gain any techinal skills during the placement. I did witness how a manager may go about their project though, and the things to do and not to do. However, at no time did I put these skills into practice.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
I didn't work with anyone or sit near anyone so that is why it was so boring. It did go through phases though. So towards the end of my internship I did have someone sitting near me to chat to, but he is not going to sit there for much longer. So good luck to my replacement with that.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
It was awful right from the start. I didn't have a contract until after I started, I wasn't given workwear until over halfway through my internship. To visit the other BMW sites you would have to plan your own trip. The only way I had any idea of what I was doing was because of the intern I replaced. My supervisor had no idea what I should be doing and was shocked when I told him I was never busy.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
Literally nothing. And I only say literally rather than just nothing, because I am trying to fill up these fifty words. Because, you know, I might as well get something out of this placement, even if it is a £5 Amazon voucher. But anyway, how convenient, I've written 50 words.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Above 25 days holiday
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
If I could give this option a zero I would, because that's the same as my chance of working for BMW again. I heard something towards the start of my intership about the fact that out of the last 450 interns, none of them have got a graduate role. I think that sums it up.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There were weekly socials on Thursdays in the pub. A weekly football session. As a lot of the interns live close to each other, it is easy to arrange social activities. Oxford isn't a bad city either, there's a fair bit to do and going on. Pub crawls were another thing we often did.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
It was very expensive. Rent was between £450 and £650 per month. It is also a bit of a struggle to find a house. Pints aren't that cheap either. Unless you go out on a Thursday but I feel that isn't for everyone, unless you've already been sacked by BMW of course.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
As you can only really go out on weekends, it can be pretty expensive. So go out on Thursday. Friday is a half day anyway. On the weekends I think it is mainly locals who are out. All in all it wasn't bad, but going away on trips might be a better way to spend your weekends on placement.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Yes like football, weekly socials in the pub, pub crawls, leaving and Christmas events (just drinks let's be honest). Most of the events were just organised by interns, so as long as you are on the mailing list and in the WhatsApp group it is very easy to get involved.