I really enjoyed my time at PwC, everyone is so welcoming and like-minded, there is a real cohesion between everyone at the office. Having an environment like that really helped when work hours were long and stressful. Very rewarding placement overall, definitely helped me decide this is the place I want to be after I graduate!!
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Everyone at PwC values the work you do, whether that be someone at the same level within the business or the partner in charge of the work you're performing. While I was there they implemented a recognition system where by everyone in the business could recognise good work/team work/inventive solutions publicly.
Each job you worked on was different and really was dependant on the team you had around you. But generally there was always someone available to help you whether that was someone in the same room as you or another colleague or manager you have built a connection with was always willing to help and support you over chat. General support from your personal 'career coach' was excellent, they always made sure they were available for a catch-up or for help.
Being in audit it was different throughout the year. At the start of the year we were undertaking all of our mandatory training and were at college studying towards the ACA qualification so we weren't too busy. But during January-March (busy season) the work load definitely picked up, you often found yourself working 12/13 hour days but as this was only for 3 months of the year it wasn't too much. At PwC there is also a culture of wellbeing being very important, often flexible working was available to help people manage their work loads and personal lives better.
At the beginning being new to the business you were often given simple tasks which didn't require much thought. As I moved on through the placement and my confidence and technical knowledge improved I was often given some of the more complex areas of the job to work on and this was very rewarding. Also we were responsible for undertaking stock counts at various businesses which were very important to be able to audit the business properly. As a placement we were treated no differently to those who were in graduate positions so it wasn't like we didn't have any responsibilities because people didn't think we'd be able to handle them.
Working at PwC has already instilled a strong work ethic in myself, I am only a few weeks back into my final year of university and I am finding myself with a lot of spare time as I'm more efficient with my time than I used to be. Also studying towards the ACA qualification while on placement will definitely help me in certain modules in final year as I will have already studied some of the topics while at college for PwC.
Office environment was very good, no cubicles, no personal offices for managers/partners, everything was open-plan so it was a free flowing atmosphere. You would often find yourself sitting with different managers/partners on a daily basis which was a good experience as you got to build relationships with everyone in the office. There was an office canteen where you were able to purchase food and a pool table for you to relax at lunch with friends and colleagues.
Placement experience was the exact same as the graduate role so it was seamless. Induction was fun but informative and helped the year group to get to know everyone. Schedules such as college and client jobs were already in place upon beginning and didn't really change too much, but if they did you were given plenty of notice.
The company invested a great deal of time and effort in the beginning to get our regulatory and legal training up to date. They also invested heavily in our studying for the ACA, we were given paid time to attend college for weeks at a time, they also paid for all exam bookings and study materials.
Before leaving I received my final set of ACA exam results and I had passed both!! As such I was informed on my last day that I have received a job offer to return as a 2nd year graduate upon completion of my degree. See you in September 2020 PwC!!
Everyone in our social group/year got on really well. We would often arrange private events between us to go out or do an activity together which was often a really nice relief after working hard. We are all still in contact now after returning to university and plan to meet up often throughout this year.
Cost of living doesn't really apply as I was living at home with my parent during placement. But cost of socialising was fine as my placement was in the area I live. Work social events were often heavily subsidised or free so it was pretty good when they cam around.
Good night life in Nottingham!!
PwC often held events where we would volunteer at local hospitals/charities etc. These were often special as you could see this was a massive help as these were firm wide events were everyone would stop working and do this for a day. Having this in the business was a really good thing as it brought everyone together into projects that meant a great deal to the community. You also had a personal 6 days you could use to volunteer during work time!!