Food Technologist Trainee working in the dairy team.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I am thoroughly enjoying my time at Marks and Spencer. The oppurutnities available are fantastic... only 13 weeks in I have travelled up and down the country visitig suppliers with across various different categories.
The project I have been given is really fantastic and I really do have the opputinity to launch something truly remarkable.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
Within my team, I have felt very valued. Not knowing anyone at first is always going to be hard and so once you're settled in and know your team, you really do feel like one of the team.
Hopefully, I have become a valued member of the team and will be missed when I leave.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I have been lucky enough to have had a fantastic line manager. She is guiding me through my project, whilst gibving me so much valuble information.
I have been given a framework to follow which will help to ensure that I learn as much as possible whilst on my placement.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I am always busy everyday. There is always work to be done.
I perform tasks such as organing qc every week, performing artwork consistency reviews, helping assist the NDP team with any new products- giving a technical insight.
If I ever have nothing to do, I can ask anyone within my category for tasks.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I have been a considerable amount of responsibilty, through both my main project and the small tasks I have been given.
I am organsing my own project. I am trusted with the responsibility to email suppliers I have not visited. I have organised day trips for fellow placement students and I .
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I have not yet finished my placement, however, I know the things I have already learnt on placemet will set me in great stead for my final year.
Hopefully, the skills I have learnt will assist me in my final team project in final year, as well as my dissertattion.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office is very very busy all the time. We hotseat, thereby providing an excellent oppurtunity to meet as many people as possible and really network.
The company is going through lots of changes and so there is always going to be some tension. Weekly huddles help provide clarity every week.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
My placement was organised well, but there could have been lots of very easy improvements.
The assessment centre was well organised, however I was not contacted from that date until very near my start date. This made me feel insignificant. In addition, they did not mention our names in the new starter list or the weekly huddle. We may only be at M&S for six months, but that does not mean we are not worth mentioning. It doesnt send a very good message.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
There was half a days induction on the first day.
We visted the archive in Leeds and the market stall.
We have attended one grad day so far and I am looking forward to the next one.
Perhaps more time could have been spent inducitng us and wellcoming us into the company.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
M&S is a great food company to work for. We seel the best food and the amount of effort our techs put into each product is great. We are always trying to be ahead of the market and so its great to see such a big company make so many great changes.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Yes. This year they took on 3 technologists, one more than usual which is working brilliantly. The more placement spots there are, the more wellcomed you feel.
We were introduced to the other placement students and have each been given a buddy- a graduate who we meet with every month.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
The cost of living is very expensive in London and despite the price if living increasing every year, the salary has not increased.
Perhaps they should offer more benefits, like a free gym like the Co-op and Pepsico do, or offer to pay for our transport, as this racks in at £6.60 a day.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I do not go out where live because there is nowehere to go out and it would be dangerous if I did.
I have a great house and socialise with them every night. If i want to go out I DON'T go out in London because its very expensive and I am still a student.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There have been no oppurtunites inside work. Perhaps they should have a netball team like lots of other companies do to create a better moral and allow people the chance to meet people on different floors.
I live to far away to do activities after work, as the dark nights make it unsafe to walk home.