1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
The team, the resources and the environment were incredibly supportive of my professional development. The amount of things I did and learnt were far beyond expectations and it was very interesting to be behind an area of finance from one of the business of a huge corporation.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I never felt like just an intern, but another member of the team. My opinion was always requested and value and they ensure to support me throughout my adaptation to the role. I created a great bonds with my team members and they became part of my life now!
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
Support was always available. I had weekly 1-2-1 meetings with my manager to discuss my development. Also, we have a software called Performance Development were we record our progress and set priorities.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I was pretty busy, but that was what I came for. I wanted to go beyond my own limits and I was able to do so. However, there is a lot of space for you to create your own balance. You are allowed to work from home if you require to do so, move around the office, join calls, sports sessions, use the gym... There are health and mental health weeks programmed, yoga and meditation sessions, spaces for mindfulness and more!
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
My team provided me with opportunities not only to work on amazing projects but also to take ownership of these and present my work to more senior people. Totally contrary of the myth that interns would be serving coffee to their managers. I was not even asked to do photocopies!
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I can reason better with the theory of certain aspects of my Accounting and Finance degree now that I know from experience what they look like in practice. I have a completely new perspective and understanding of certain concepts.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office was normally very quiet, with a perfect environment for you to focus on your work. People were very friendly and you will often find cake, cookies and chocolates in the coffee areas from employees who decide to share them with the rest of the office. From time to time we had a feel socials where representatives come from all over the world to give to keep us updated on certain corporate affairs.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The internship itself was pretty organised in the sense that everything for support and development was set over the first few weeks and scheduled on a recurrent basis. However, we do have to take into consideration that roles can have different nature and some can be more spontaneous than others. Organisational circumstances can also affect the structure of the role, and I went through a change of CEO, the announcements of GEHC spinoff from the conglomerate and the sale of BP to DNH.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
GEHC has plenty of resources available on demand for most types of skills developments across different platforms. Online trainings, webinars, online courses, video or telepresence conferences, etc... In each and every possible area of possible development, whether that is on technical skills, industry specific skills, soft skills or self development.
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?
GE has a Graduate Programme called Financial Management Programme (FMP) which consists in four six months rotations on different finance areas. These rotations are likely to be in different countries as well, which is a great opportunity for those who like me would love to experience different countries and cultures. The pay is great and has a lot of different benefits, but above all it’s is an extremely challenging and rewarding programme.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
We had around 50 interns divided in two/three sites in the same area, and we had team leaders on each site that were in charge of keeping us connected and create opportunities for social cohesion outside of work. I think they did a great job and we had quite a few socials going on during my cohort.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
I stayed in London and commutes to Amersham each work day. It was around 1.5 hours of journey each way (door to door) and whilst that is quite a lot, I did benefit from it. First, I stayed in the city which is a lot of fun and has plenty of things to do both on weekdays and weekends. Then, I became very disciplined with my sleep routine and learnt to enjoy waking up very early.
In my cohort however, most people were living in surrounding areas of Amersham and they’d plan the socials there and not in London, which was a pain over the weekends. Also, whilst rent is at a similar price than in London, you will spend ~220 in transport each month (if you use a travel card with student discount t).
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Nightlife is non-existent where we work, but there is some stuff happening in surrounding areas, plus the best parties will happen at some other intern’s house! Plus, London is not that fair away and you can grab taxis/ubers among a few people to come back and save some money :)
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Yes, there were plenty of activities from day one. The first few ones that you will be introduced to will be the FSP (team leaders for interns) and the STEM network. Other examples are: the Women’s network, plenty of charitable events (monthly cake sale, quizzes, GE Fun Day), among others.