The opportunities, support and colleagues within SAP made my placement extremely enjoyable. Both in terms of the network I developed and the work I undertook, the placement was thoroughly enjoyable and will be something that will aid my development for my entire career.
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During my placement, I wanted to be treated as a colleague rather than an intern - and that is exactly what occurred. I had more responsibility as the year progressed, including owning my own opportunities. I felt extremely valued and a key member of both the team and company as a whole.
I was provided with both professional training as a collective cohort of interns, but also training, support and guidance on a 1:1 level throughout the year. Training and support was both in terms of job specific topics, but also personal development regarding life in and out of the workplace. Workplace training included presentation skills, office etiquette and more.
As the company works on a quarterly basis, my workload varied during different times - however I always had work to do. Some days resulted in working late and having lunch at my desk, but I thrived in this environment and is when I felt like an integral member of the team. If you wanted to come in and do your 9-5, there was more than enough work to do - but the key was going. beyond that.
As the year progressed, as did my levels of responsibility. Increases in knowledge and experience as time went on resulted in me having more specialist work to do, leading to me owning my own opportunities. I found an area where I could add value, and my manager was happy to let me run with it. As long as you prove you can conduct the work in an adequate and professional manner, SAP will provide endless responsibilities.
My degree is technical, whereas my placement was more business related. As a result, the assistance in my degree studies and beyond is more associated to work ethic, attitude and professionalism. The placement has taught me how to network, work in a corporate environment, engage with individuals of all job titles and more - skills which will be invaluable as my career develops.
The atmosphere is professional yet approachable. People are there to get on with their work, however there is a lot of collaboration and everyone works in teams. Everyone is extremely approachable, willing to answer questions and happy to support where necessary. Quarter-ends obviously become busier, but they are extremely exciting.
Due to the scale of the placement scheme, it needs to be extremely organised. SAP did a great job in regards to this, providing endless training opportunities, structure around everyone's placement and constant support. Managers have to have a structure in place for their intern's time at SAP, which works extremely well.
There were mandatory training sessions run for placement students, for topics such as LinkedIn and working in a corporate environment. I was then provided with presentation training on multiple occasions, executive coaching, and opportunities to travel to multiple conferences including Ariba Live in Barcelona.
SAP are expanding the extent of their graduate hires, and this year have hired 20% of last year's placement group. I myself have been provided with a part-time job through my final year of university, and also a full-time position once I have graduated. Future employment prospects are extremely appealing, due to the investment SAP make in training and responsibilities provided.
For people that didn't live at home, they would be based around Clapham / Richmond / Twickenham areas. These are great social hubs and due to the number of placement students, there are always people who want to socialise after work and at weekends. Work drinks are also common, especially around Christmas.
I cannot speak from living experience, due to living at home during my placement year. Regarding socialising, SAP is situated within London and as a result is more expensive than other areas of the UK. However, this is common across all placements as most are situated within the capital.
Clapham / Richmond have great nightlife venues, and span from restaurants, to bars, to nightclubs. There is something for everyone and the areas are full of young professionals.
I was involved in the SAP football team, who meet weekly for both 7-a-side fixtures as well as 11-a-side fixtures against other companies. We also have the SAP World Cup every year, which involves going to Germany for a football tournament with many of the market units. This was an amazing experience, both in terms of enjoyment but also meeting colleagues from all over the globe.