1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I enjoyed the camaraderie and the atmosphere of the office/client, and felt that I was able to contribute to the overall wellbeing of the group. The work itself was difficult to grasp at certain times but by the second or third week I was far more confident in the tasks assigned to me.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I felt very much valued by my colleagues. From day 1 on my first job they would ask me how I was doing, how I was finding the internship experience and of course giving me assistance with my day to day work. Spending a long time (4ish weeks) on one particular job only served to solidify this feeling
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
The coaching from my colleagues, managers and superiors was brilliant - if I ever felt out of my depth at all then not only did I feel completely unphased by soliciting their assistance, but they themselves were really willing to give it. The fact that they understood my initial unfamiliarity with the work and sought to bring me to speed as quickly as possible was really very heartening.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Almost every day I would go into work knowing the tasks that I had to get on with - again part of this probably comes from being on a job for a relatively long time. On occasion where I spent a couple of days in the central office I found myself perhaps with a little less work to do.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Whilst not being entrusted with ultra high risk work (naturally), the tasks that were given to me seemd to me to be tangibly contributing to the overall audit process. I was extremely glad that I wasn't being fobbed off 24/7 on menial tasks and that my engagement team had the belief in me to give me work that was actually important.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
Coming from a humanities background the work I did during the internship was essentially alien to me, so as far as degree studies go there's not really a correlation. Having said that, in terms of my overall personal development I think that my internship experience will give me invaluable assistance in my life beyond university.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
office atmosphere obviously depends on the team that you are working with, the clients you are interacting with, and the office that you are operating in. Generally the atmosphere in all the offices I worked in was very positive, conducive to an enjoyable but productive working environment that was invariably very welcoming to me.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Again this depends on the team that I was working with. I found the organisation on my first job exceptional - I had had specific EGAs/FSLIs assigned to me before arriving in the office, and individual team members ready to begin coaching me as soon as I began. My second job was a little less organised in this regard, but I should caveat that this was a much more high-pressured audit and of course I had already had several weeks experience so did not need as much coaching.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I suppose the biggest investment from the firm would be the sacrifice of the time of current employees - the SAs and engagement leaders on my jobs who took time out to take me through EGAs and general audit practice for example.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Above 25 days holiday
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
Of course the firm is a very attractive employer - there is little about the firm/organisation itself that detracts from my desire to be a part of it. Whether or not I definitely can see a future in the kind of work undertaken by PwC is however, another matter entirely.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Yeah I would say that from what I have observed and from how I got along with my fellow interns that, despite being a relatively small office, the social scene at Southampton is good. the table tennis break room would be my particular highlight, although the five a side football team and rumours I heard of a cricket team were also impressive
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Southampton is relatively cheap but nothing more or less than elsewhere in the UK bar London perhaps. There are some excellent food places on the next road from where I was staying, and in the evenings the pubs nearby are reasonably cheap to go to. Overall I'd say it's average financially.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I didnt really have a chance to go out much during my internship, but have been out in southampton before to Oceania, which was an interesting experience. It's what you expect to see, your run of the mill night-time venue. would like to see some more Eurodance in future excursions
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?