1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I was able to engage with a variety of work during my time with Aon so there was never a dull day. I was also completing meaningful work meaning that I was fully immereced in the role and gained valuable experience whilst also feeling like I had made a contribution which was what I loved most about the role.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
The fact that I had a high workload was testiment to the fact that I was valued by my colleagues as they feel confident to pass the work to me. Several colleagues in particular repeatedly delegated work to me, evidence that they were pleased with and valued my contribution. I was welcomed into the team by all colleagues and was invited to attend team socials.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
During my internship, I had a line manager and also a designated buddy. I had regular catchups with my manager with a half an hour meeting every one to two weeks. These became less frequent towards the end of the internship as I became more comfortable in the role. My buddy was always on had to answer any questions that I had and members of the team who delegated work to me were always willing to help if I had any queries.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
One member of my team remarked that I was one of the busiest interns they had seen. The work was plentiful though still managable with good planning and organisation. This was a good contrast from my previuos internship as it allowed be to gain a real insight into what the graduate role would entail.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a lot of responsibility during the role as I was completing client work on a daily basis, work which would ordinarily be completed by the graduates. I was also often unsupervised when completing tasks and so held all of the responsibility for meeting deadlines and completing the work to a high standard.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
My analytical skills have certainly developed within the role and this will be invaluable in completing my mathematics degree. I have also seen a vast improvement in my presentation skills which will be of great use when give my project presentation at university and also in my future career as a consultant which I hope to pursue. This experience will also give me a good grounding to begin my professional exams after my degree.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The atmosphere in the office was very friendly. Some days could be quiet at times with colleagues on annual leave or taking study days but that helped to contribute to the real tight-knit feeling within the team. We also were lifted by the frequent providing of cakes due to the official cake policy within the office.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The Early Careers team worked hard before the internship to work with line managers to ensure that all of the necessary arrangements were in place before the interns arrived. The internship began with a three day induction for all interns and industrial placements in Chelmsford where we engaged with interative workshops to introduce us to the role and the skills we would develop. We then attended meetings with our managers on a first day within our home office where they gave us all of the relevant information and explained the process for the rest of the internship.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
The company first invited all interns to Chelmsford for a three day induction, paying for all travel and accomodation. There, they hired companies to give workshops focussed on enhancing our presentation skills and identifying our strengths. Back in our home office, we had manditory training modules to complete and every Tuesday lunchtime, we had a 'Lunch and Learn' presentation where the Early Careers team invited senior members of the organisation to talk to the interns about their experiences and their specialist area of the business.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Working from home
Healthcare from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
The future employment prospects with the firm are very appealing. I enjoyed working with all of my colleagues and loved the work that I was able to be ivolved with over such a short period of time. The firm also offers lots of support to graduates completing proffessional exams which is a major bonus.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The social scene over the summer was excellent, although I have been advised that this does tail off later in the year. We had football matches, a trip to play crazy golf, a trip to the cricket (unfortunately this was weather affected) and a trip to the cinema to watch the Love Island final. On top of this, we frequently had drinks on a Friday evening after work.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I lived local to the office and so was able to live at home during the internship. Thus, I had no living expenses but the cost of my train ticket for the duration of the internship was reasonable. Socialising in the centre of Birmingham was quite expensive for both food and drink but on the occasions we ventured out of the centre, food and drink was reasonably priced.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I'm not really a person for clubbing but the nightlife in Birmingham is good. There is Broad Street for those who enjoy the clubbing experience which is home to several clubs, although some can be a little pricey. Around the centre, there are several bars open late which are ideal for those who want a quiet drink rather than a night clubbing.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were lots of opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work. Whilst I was there, there were several football matches organised in the office. I also attended a crazy golf event with the team and a trip to the cricket was organised, although this unfortunately was disrupted by the weather.