Intern within Transfer Pricing (Tax)
I thoroughly enjoyed the placement for the 6 weeks that I was here. I was often kept busy with different types of work from a variety of tax teams rather than the one I was initially put in. People made an effort to try and involve in their work but there were times where I found myself having to look for work in order to stay busy.
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It was a mix as there were some people that were really good in making you feel like part of the team and were very friendly and went out of their way to see if you were ok and doing well. Then there were other people who didn't really make an effort even when you were trying and treated you as just another face in the office. I guess it just depends what sort of team you ended up in as I'm sure there are other teams better than this and other teams that are worse than this.
The whole way through there was support provided from a variety of sources. You were given a career coach who you could talk to about career goals, aspirations and progression. You also talked with them about your goals for the internship and how you will go about trying to achieve them. They they offered support and advice in how to do this. You were also given a buddy who is a slightly junior member of the team who helped you out at the start in terms of meeting the team and getting used to the work. They are your point of call in terms of any problems you have and can help you out or point you in the right direction. HR/student recruitment were always available too if you had any questions and provided me with lots of information before and during the internship, with things like self-help guides and FAQ answers.
Generally most days I was kept busy with some work taking a few days to do and other bits taking a few hours. However, there were times where I did have to be proactive in looking for work which isn't the worst thing in the world. At first it was a bit daunting but as time went on and I met more people, I was given more work as people knew who I was. There were times where I would ask people for work and they would say they would get back to me which meant I had to kill time myself. But I often went on the internal e-learning training platform to make the most of the time rather than sitting there bored.
I was given work that would eventually be sent/billed to the client although the vast majority was not. Even with the billed work there were still a few layers of people for it to go through before it would be sent to the client. Which I guess is a positive thing as you don't have to worry about trying to get everything perfect and people do appreciate that it is a learning experience for you and you can't get something right in a field you have no experience in. Some of the work I did had tight deadlines which did mean there was some pressure on me to get the work done properly and on time which was a bit stressful, but it shows that people did trust you and did give you some responsibility.
I think the skills that I have picked up in this internship will be valuable for when I come back to do the graduate role at the firm as I know exactly what to expect in terms to the style of work and how it should be done. They didn't put the interns in a different area or limit the work that you could do so in essence you were doing work that you would be doing in the graduate role which was good. I don't think the technical knowledge that I have picked up will help me too much in my final year since my modules don't really relate much to the internship that I did. Although, the soft skills are easily transferable to university as things like time management, organisation, communication, team work and report writing are all skills needed for university too.
I think the team I was in can be seen as quieter and less social than other teams in the office. People are generally quite spread out so there isn't much social talking and things like that going on. I managed to go to another office and the atmosphere there was very different which I think I prefer. Where people were able to freely talk and get on with their work at the same time rather than just working solidly without much communication with others outside of work related things. I guess it all depends on personal preference
Organisation of the internship in general was very well run. From the 3 day residential at the start to the introduction at the office you'd be working in. I would say that there was a barrage of information before you joined with lots of emails, so it was hard to keep on top of what you had/hadn't done in terms of getting ready for the internship but other than that it was all good. Towards the end they send out information about what you need to do in your last few days in order to complete the leaving process without any issues and this is all set out in an easy to understand way.
The firm paid for a 3 day residential at the start of the internship where you met people doing their internship from across all the offices in the country. Whilst this was quite intense I did learn more about tax and the types of tax as they did put on sessions about it for us there. During my time on the placement I was able to complete e-learning modules as well as attend training sessions meant for full-time members of staff. The career coach system also meant that there was someone in your team that could talk about your own personal career development with you which was also good.
Completing the internship gives you the opportunity to be offered a graduate role within the team you were working in for the last 6 weeks. There are also a wide variety of jobs within PwC therefore it is very appealing in terms of future employment prospects. Because it is such a big company there are offices across the country and world which you could potentially transfer to or d secondments with during your time at the firm. Even within offices, there are different lines of services and specialisms. The firm came across as wanting to keep you happy in the firm rather than letting you leave to go to a job that you could always have done within PwC.
Because the office is so big I barely saw any of the other intern students during my time at the firm. In part this was because there were no events put on by PwC to bring the interns together to socialise. However, it was also down to us as we weren't very good at arranging to meet up with each other regularly. So the blame can't really be put on PwC but I think that they could have always put on a social event or two for the interns to get to see each other again.
As you can imagine in London it is quite expensive to eat out or go for drinks etc. I went on a social to some T20 cricket which was paid for by the firm which was good fun. But I didn't do too much in and around London itself as I commuted in from outside and lived at home. Train tickets were very expensive which is a downside to working in London and commuting in as well as the travel time.
I am not entirely sure as I didn't really go out at night in the area. Considering the office is in central London I assume it is quite well connected to other parts of the city where people go out. But in terms of what I recognised I don't think there were too many bars that were in the immediate area but I'm sure there were some in walking distance or a short tube ride away.
As I was only there for 6 weeks there weren't many opportunities to get involved in many things outside of work. However, as mentioned above I was able to attend my teams social to the cricket which was good. Alot of the people I had done work for up until that point were able to go so it was good talking to them outside of the work setting. I was also able to speak to people that I hadn't come across in the office before which was nice. The people there were across a variety of positions of seniority.