1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I absolutely loved my placement year, I was given so many amazing opportunities and a huge amount of responsibility which I did not expect, considering it was a placement year opportunity. My confidence and capability grew massively over the year and I have increased my knowledge which will help hugely in my final year of university.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I was seen as similar to any other colleague rather than being seen as a placement student. Colleagues hugely valued my help and contributions during projects or meetings. I was given alot of coaching and mentoring throughout the year to help me in my future career and it really seemed as if colleagues cared about my progress and career.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
My line manager met with me frequently in order to discuss any areas of strength or weakness which had presented. She then helped to coach me through the situations and we discussed if there was anything further that could help me in areas of weakness, such as confidence. This was massively helpful.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
My workload depended on the rotation that I was doing, as some rotations were much more strategic but slower paced and some rotations involved a huge workload which was not as strategic. I enjoyed having a mix of both as it tested both my time management skills and strategic ability.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was given a huge amount of responsibility which I did not expect. I was allowed to run projects within the business, making business decisions. I was also allowed to coach and mentor interns which came into the business, to allow me to take a more managerial role, even though I was a placement student.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
The skills which I developed throughout my placement year will be useful for life. I have massively grown in my confidence, which will help me not only during my final year but also into a graduate job. I also gained training on a variety of different skills, from coaching to excel and my team were really supportive of any trainings which I wanted to complete.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
There was a really nice atmosphere in the office in which you could ask anyone for help and they would take time out to help you with whatever you needed. Lots of the campaigns created a real buzz around the office, such as the britains got talent judging desk in the entrance to the office and the hunt for the golden percy!
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The rotations were not arranged before we arrived, however this was so that they could be arranged in line with our interests and areas which we wanted to experience. We were given our laptops and a two day induction at the start of our placement, in which we met our Buddy and Line Manager.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
There was alot of training on offer, as we could book on to any courses which were running across the entire company. Within each rotation, we were given the necessary training in order to complete the entry level role within that department, which meant that I had alot of transferable skills.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Above 25 days holiday
Working from home
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I personally was offered a graduate role within the company, however, the placement year was an opportunity for us to decide if we were suited to the company just as much as them deciding if they wanted us to return as graduates. This was discussed frequently throughout the year and there was good communication around future careers.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There wasn't much of a social scene with other placement students as there was not that many of us, however, this is not something that really bothered me personally. We sometimes went for drinks and meals for birthdays/leaving do's as a team which was a really nice way to get to know each other.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I lived in Cambridge and commuted into London which was fairly expensive, and worked out to be around the same price as moving to London to rent accomodation there. The bars and restaurants surrounding the office could also be quite expensive, but the location meant that it was easy to travel to other areas of london.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I didn't really experience the nightlife near the office, there were many bars and pubs which were really nice to go to for a couple of drinks after work but we did not tend to stay too late and go out to clubs etc so I couldn't really comment on this.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were some volunteering options, in which we went to a school to help year 10's with CV and interview skills. This was really rewarding to do as it meant that we could use what we had learnt to help others. There were also lots of opportunities to attend retail wide events which were a great opportunity to network.