1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
Overall I enjoyed my internship, got to meet a lot of new people and also do some travelling to other sites. I found the arrangements for my first day to be a little disorganised and having to explain to two different security guards why I was there was a little odd. Also I was unable to park on site despite there being ample free spaces to do so as no one knew how to give me temporary access.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I believe that within the small team I was a part of I had become welcomed as a member of the crew. I was always asked for my input in meetings and feel that my contributions were taken seriously. At no point during my tenure did I feel as though I was 'just an intern'.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
This is something that is maybe a little odd to say as for me, being given a challenge and asked to go out on my own to accomplish it is far more supportive than having my hand held throughout. My manager was always on hand to give me advice and I never felt as though I was left out of my depth despite being given some challenging tasks.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
During times when I was working on tasks I would say that I was very busy, the problem is that the workload assignment was put together for an inexperienced intern which is the opposite end of the scale for my abilities. Often I found myself without much to do within my department and having to look at finding things to fill the gaps. It does not help that a major restructure had been announced on my second day so the team I was a part of was already having its focuses realigned.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a lot of responsibility within the team, allowed to publish articles on an internal database and given freedom to edit these into a format of my choosing. I was given the task of putting together weekly summaries to feedback to my line manager each Thursday. This being said, I could still have had more work to do.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
There are some skills that I will take away from my time that will without doubt help me once my time at university is over but like to think that I had things to offer the business also. The department I was a part of has very little to do with my degree but I have learnt a number of important skills about how to deal with people and manage expectations.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office where I was placed was like working on the Mary Celeste. Very few people and not a lot of going on and the only thing between me and silence was the gentle hum of the air-conditioning unit above me. Luckily the team was able to come together on a number of occasions for face to face interaction (the team was spread over several sites)
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Lloyd's have put together a very welcoming and well thought out internship for most of the intake and it is clear that had I been based in London or one of the major hubs then this would have been of great benefit. I was based in a satellite office (at my own request might I add, in order to be close to home) and as a result was not in an ideal place to benefit fully. There was also a challenge run that saw the interns put into teams to take part and despite there being another intern based at the same site as myself I was put into one with individuals who were all based at another site and as a result opted to drop out of the challenge.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I definitely feel that the company had invested a lot in making sure that I had all the training I needed. I completed the same onboarding training that anyone joining the team would and was always offered the option of more. I was also able to attend a full day training event to learn about agile working.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Initially when I joined the company my goal was to get in, do my ten weeks and get out. Its a big bank and had nothing to do with my career aspirations or what I wanted to do personally. That train of thought changed around my third week when I realised that I had yet to see any 'banking' being done and that actually this company is a good place to work. I met lots of people who had done degrees outside of banking or IT and yet they were thriving within a banking institution. I am coming back for another ten week placement next year and after that who knows?
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
I am sitting on the fence with this question for two reasons.
1) There was only myself and one other intern at my location and it was week eight before we knew of each others existence.
2) Even if there had been loads of other interns at my location I probably would not have involved myself in any social scene as that's not how I roll.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I commuted into work on a daily basis and so cannot really answer that question. I can say that it cost £60 per week to travel from Doncaster to Pudsey by car and that included £17.50 in parking each week, and that there is a nice sandwich shop around the corner.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I'm not the type of guy that likes fancy wine bars, restaurants and a thriving nightlife so it is a good job I was based in Pudsey. The closest you would get to nightlife here is a trip to the chippy and a can of special brew from the offy. I imagine that most would get on a train to Leeds, its only 10 minutes away.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
As I mentioned before, I'm not mush of a social animal so activites outside of work are not really my cup of tea. That being said there was not a lot that I heard of though I do know of some of my fellow interns, based in London being quite a close knit crew and getting up to all sorts of things after work.