Actuarial Pensions - Summer Vacation at KPMG

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Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
Birmingham East Midlands
Review Date
£18,000 - £19,999

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About You
The Organisation
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About You

1. To what extent did you enjoy the insight?

I felt that the internship provided a number of opportunities to get involved in different pieces of work. This included Pensioner's Transfer Values, Audit Assists and Accounting. This was assisted with Actuarial training that gave me a flavour of what the Actuarial exams would actually involve, this was especially interesting understanding the concepts that are at play within Excel formulas.


2. To what extent did you feel valued during your time at the company or firm?

Within my placement I did feel that I was valued. The graduates made me feel welcome during my six week internship and were happy for me to ask questions on their experience. I was never short of work although I did feel that it would be difficult to make a real impact on the department beyond just completing my work.


3. How much guidance/support did you receive during the insight?

During my placement I received quite a bit of guidance from my Buddy (a 1st year Graduate) in what Actuarial Pensions is like but also guiding me on what their experiences were. I was advised to consider if the people in management positions have a role that you would want and would be willing to put around five years into exams in order to get towards.


4. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and information you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?

I have learnt better on how to manage multiple deadlines with strict time constraints and of working for a consistent period of time without multi-tasking, this made me work a lot more efficient. I also became better at drafting emails to clients a very important skill required for future employment. Finally, I also developed in my written communication ensuring that what I wrote to clients flowed and made sense.


The Organisation

5. How well structured was the insight?

There was a day long induction day this included a presentation from an Audit Partner, introductions to KPMG and setting up our laptops. This day was with most of the other insight students from across many other offices. On the second day, we went to our local offices. I had a buddy and a performance manager who were able to guide me over the course of the insight programme. After this point it was less structured and more based on people giving me pieces of work.


6. How was the general atmosphere during your insight?

During my insight programme the atmosphere was friendly although quiet at most times. People were happy to answer any questions I had during the insight, particularly when I had new pieces of work that had been assigned to me. I never felt like I was being an inconvenience asking questions to anyone in the office.


7. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?

On the first day the company provided me with a lot of materials including a laptop and all required adapters. I had training sessions with my buddy on Actuarial concepts. There was a lot of online training resources that I could use at my leisure to ensure I was trained for Audit Assists and a number of other areas.
Beyond the first day there were no dedicated training days which were reserved for Graduates.


8. To what extent did the insight help you to understand what it would be like to have a full time role with the company or firm?

My role was very similar particularly in the later two thirds of the insight programme to what a Graduate role would be like. The differences would be that Graduates have targets for chargeable hours, more work than I was set but also have more access to training sessions in different offices.


9. How much did the insight help you in understanding the company culture?

I was able to gain a far better understanding of KPMG's values and how they are able to put them into practice. I did not have the opportunity to take part in one of the Corporate Social Responsibility days but there are plenty of opportunities for this at KPMG you are entitled to six days of volunteering.


10. How valuable was the content of the day in helping you to decide on your future career path?

This insight programme has definitely helped me to take a decision on my future career path. Ultimately, I would recommend that you find out what you enjoy doing and pursue that, do not just choose a career because you think it will pay you to the most at the end of the day you will have to work there for several years.


Other Information

11. Were you paid or reimbursed adequately for this experience?

I was paid during my Summer Vacation insight programme it was fairly average pay for an internship. I would have been reimbursed for my expenses but I did not actually go to another office during my placement so I did not need to claim for any expenses. On the Induction day others claimed expenses for traveling to offices that are not your local.

12. Were there opportunities for networking and meeting other employees of the company or firm?

There was a Partner on the first day who did a presentation to all the Summer Interns there but was not hugely relevant for my business area. Disappointing, on the networking drinks there were not any graduates or actual KPMG employees there it was only Summer Interns most of whom I would never see again after that day.
There were lots of opportunities to network with people across the department but minimal interaction with other departments but that could be that I was in Pensions were there is less interaction with other departments.


13. How were the networking/ social event opportunities?

There was a Social half way through the programme, this involved an Escape Room and a Meal. It was a good opportunity to meet with the other interns in other departments and allowed us to share our experiences. There were some 1st and 2nd year graduates who took us on this social and they ensured that everyone got involved and enjoyed themselves.


14. Did you find out about activities that employees can get involved in outside of work?

Well as part of work you are able to do Corporate Social Responsibility days and are entitled to six days on top of your holidays each year. There was a few opportunities to go for drinks after work with colleagues. Unfortunately, I did not really find out about many opportunities to get involved in outside of work.


15. Would you recommend this insight to a friend?

Yes I would recommend this insight programme to a friend. This programme is a good opportunity to find out what it is like to be a graduate without the same level of commitment. I was able to get involved in a wide range of work and gain a good understanding of what Actuarial Pensions is.