Ensuring there was enough colleagues on the phone and service levels were met.
I did enjoy this internship to an extent in the sense that it was a very valuable experience, in where I did learn a lot but it was quite a challenging environment. I enjoyed carrying out my placement surrounded by a lot of other interns however I feel that the job itself did not match me or the profile that I created when I applied. The role was a lot more mathematical and in a way operational that I would have wanted. Although this was still highly useful in the sense that I learnt a lot of new things it was quite difficult at times as it was not a role I could comfortably and confidently carry out. I did feel very lost in my role at times and at the beginning if I did not have the support network of the other interns I may not have stayed on the placement. I think that as I enjoyed my role so much on my previous internship and I believed that this role was more suited to me and allowed me to flourish a lot more in it. Whereas this role was a lot more challenging and the lack of a team presence here made it very difficult at times.
Although my line manager and team were all lovely at times I did feel slightly undervalued as I could not carry out the same level of work as quickly as they could. My line manager also works in a very complex and fast paced role so there was probably not as much individual time spent with me in comparison to other interns and line managers. The fact that all of my team are also based in other locations was not ideal as it didn't allow me to have a strong support network on site which was at times very annoying. However the fact that my team trusted me enough to carry out work on my own did add a sense of value. There were times I felt quite left out by my team, especially at the beginning. For example simple things like being left out of the roll call on team calls by my own line manager. The constant forgetting of my presence in the team was very demeaning and did add to my feelings of feeling lost here.
My line manager did give me as much support as possible. When I started the internship we agreed that I would be very independent and proactive in finding work which I was comfortable doing. I enjoyed the level of trust and independence given to me and the majority of my team were very helpful in teaching me how to carry out tasks and offering support and guidance were necessary. I did have one on one time with my line manager but sometimes it did not happen on a consistent basis due to my managers hectic schedule. However this being said she was always available and helpful when I needed her.
At the beginning of my placement I felt very lost and I did struggle a lot. I could not carry out most of the work my team did and at the beginning I reached out a lot for work but due to lack of time, my team were not always available to go through it all with me. I also waited around for the first few weeks for my main project to start and it was then taken off me as it was believed there was no longer a need for it. Once I sourced work for myself and was taught things I did become a lot busier on a daily basis however at the start this was not the case. I also believe that system access takes a lot of time and restricts what an intern can do in the first few weeks. I think that an interns skills and profile should be taken into further consideration when placing them in a role.
My line manager gave me a lot of responsibility in the sense that she did not babysit me in my role and trusted me enough to let me carry out and source my own work. As long as I met all of the deadlines she was happy with what I was doing. I was also given a lot of responsibility in the sense that I was allowed to carry out a lot of the teams daily roles on my own without supervision. Obviously the work I was doing was checked but there was no one sitting over my shoulder doubting my ability to carry it out. I found this to be a great benefit in my role as it taught me a lot, allowed me to grow and gave me a sense of being valued within my team.
The skills I developed in this role were valuable to an extent. I did learn a lot around excel and MI which is not a skill that I develop through studying a History degree. I found this highly useful as it allowed me to fill out gaps in my own development. I also further developed my networking and communication skills which are obviously invaluable and will help in any path of life. My role allowed me to see the more operational side to the bank which was very useful. For me the most important skill that I developed was my confidence which I believe improved a lot during my time here. My only draw back would be that the role may not be as useful to me as it would've been to someone else possibly as this is not an area of the bank I can see a future in. However, it was still useful to see this side.
The atmosphere in my office was generally very good. There were eight interns in my building and we all got on well and created a strong friendship. This was very valuable to me as I have no team here and my line manager was very distant sometimes. The colleagues were all more than helpful to all of us during our time here. There was a very relaxed atmosphere in our office and there were no feelings of being unable to ask for help. Several of the other line managers also almost looked out for me in a sense and were more than helpful. I found this therefore a very easy atmosphere to work in.
I don't believe that my internship was very well organised. At the start the amount of time it took to get access to everything wasted a lot of time and caused a lot of setbacks initially. In my placement which is probably not the case in most my projects were constantly changing and being taken away which was very frustrating. I was also told that I would be travelling and spending time with my team and then this was cancelled. The constant upheaval was very annoying and did contribute to my frustration to this placement. I also don't believe that the organisation before I started my placement was very good and I have almost just been put into a role without consideration of the profile I wrote.
We had mandatory training to complete but I don't really feel like this added much to my own personal development, this was more of a task I had to complete for them. The induction day was not that valuable for the amount of travel I had to carry out as they simply went over a power point that we had already received. In my role there was more of a focus on getting the job done than an over all focus on my development.
I am considering future employment with the organisation as I do believe that they are a good company to work for. There are a lot of benefits if you are employed by them and there is a great sense of care for their colleagues. Although this placement was not ideal, my previous one did show me that I can fit in within the organisation. The graduate scheme is a great opportunity and seems to be one of the best schemes at the moment. The fact that after two years you roll off into a grade D role is highly appealing.
There was a very good social scene among the other interns I was placed with. Once the charity challenge got underway we all got a lot closer and were happy to do things with each other. I think it was very useful that the majority of us were all sitting on the one floor near each other. We also had regular coffee mornings which allowed us all time away from the desk to get to know each other. Some of the line managers were also very helpful and encouraged us to create bonds.
I worked in the town where my university is which was very useful as the cost of living is quite good. I was also able to walk to work which allowed me to cut out travel costs. My only complaints would be that other interns who moved away got their accommodation paid for whereas I had to stay here due to personal reasons and therefore had to extend my own accommodation lease and there was no help given towards this. Previously they offered an extra 100 pound a week for this but this year it was removed. I do not think that this was overly fair as if I went away would have had no rent costs.
As I live in Belfast I already knew what the nightlife was like. There are a variety of different types of pubs and clubs as well as activities that people can do. This caters for all. The price of going out in Belfast is also very cheap in comparison to other places. Arguably it is cheaper to go out during the week than weekends when we are off but this is most likely the case anywhere.
The charity challenge offered us the chance to get involved in activities outside of work. For this we did a sponsored walk, bag packs and bake sales for example. Lloyds are heavily invested in helping the community and charity work which does offer the chance to do a lot other than work. We also visited the Halifax foundation as well as a charity that they fund. This was probably one of the highlights of my time here. The activities that you can do are all charity focused however. There were no activities that involved socialising with other colleagues just the other interns.