1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I really did enjoy the internship. I took ownership of the project I was working on and had lots of freedom to design it how I wanted to. There was lots of friendly help on hand for when I got stuck. Lots of fun events for interns.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Very much! From day one I was a full member of the team. I always felt involved in stand ups and planning meetings. My contributions were always taken seriously. The project I worked on was a serious tool that will genuinely be used by other developers.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
Bloomberg have this nailed! I had a mentor, with whom I had two weekly meetings, one "knowledge sharing" session in which he would explain how the company infrastructure works, and a second in which we talked about non-technical matters. The company puts a lot of effort into throwing events to help you meet people across the company, and puts you in contact with various people in different departments that are there to support you.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
For the most part I felt like I was busy enough to never be bored, but never felt stressed at any point. There were a couple of times that I felt progress was slow, primarily because working here requires learning lots of proprietary libraries.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
Lots! I was able to take lots of control over the direction of my project. Colleagues trusted me to make sensible technical decisions. The project I work on is a serious project, and the tool I developed will be used by other developers and is expected to undergo further development.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I'd say it won't make much difference for my degree, but in terms of relevant industrial experience it's second to none. It's amazing how much I have learned in such a short time.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
Great! The office is open-plan and has lots of artwork. Everyone seems excited to come in to work and takes their job seriously, but at the same time, the people are fun to be around. It was awesome to work in such a multinational office, full of people that are highly educated in their field.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
Really organised! It's quite apparent that Bloomberg have been running the internship for a long time and have ironed out pretty much all the issues. They seemed to think of everything in advance before it had a chance to become an issue. If you need help moving to London or require assistance with any part of the process, they'll probably have a team ready to step in and help you.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I feel like the company invested a huge amount in me. The first 6 days were spent in training, in which they briefly covered the programming languages we are likely to be using and introduced the internal libraries we would be working with. Throughout the internship there were plenty of training sessions and networking events to make sure we settle in.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I would love to work for the company in the future! Everyone that works here seems to rave about the place. Career progression opportunities look excellent. In the engineering department, there are always training sessions to learn more. Engineers can choose to specialise as a Champ (a tech expert) or go down the management route and become a team leader - the choice is yours.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
The interns were very social. The Sugarloaf (a pub across the street) is always busy on a Friday night! Having so many networking events meant it was easy to make new friends. Interns met up on several weekends to do events around the city.
One warning: while not explicitly drinking events, there were multiple "networking" events that took place in pubs. There is of course no pressure to drink, but I would understand if those that choose not to drink alcohol might not always enjoy these events.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
Mixed - central London is pretty expensive, but the salary is good it's not really a problem.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Pretty good! There are lots of bars and pubs near the office. I don't think there are many clubs around here, but if that's your thing I imagine you wouldn't have to travel too far. It's central London, you can go wherever you want! For example, lots of interns spent an evening in the sky garden with an amazing view of the city.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Yep - there are company-wide BOB (Best of Bloomberg) events in which employees and interns spend some of their time working towards charitable causes. For example, we had a "missing maps" day in which we worked on the open maps project to document and index maps of remote areas at risk of natural disasters.