My placement at Accenture was one of the best experiences I could have had during my university career. Upon joining, I was incredibly nervous, but then onwards, I was able to enjoy every minute of the year. I was afforded a wide range of responsibilities and met people who are mentoring me even after I finished working.
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The range of responsibility I was given my placement years ranged between the projects I worked on. On my first project, there was little for me to work on but on the two that followed I was trusted with a great deal of responsibility taking on tasks that graduate analysts or even consultants would normally do. As a result, I felt highly valued and an essential part of the team.
On each of the projects I worked on, my managers provided exceptional and guidance with regards to both navigating Accenture and my career. Not only this, but they also took time to teach me new skills relating to data analytics software such as PowerBI and Tableau. This, along with the other skills I developed, will aid me greatly in the future.
In consulting, how busy you are is extremely dependent on both the project you are on and what stage of the project you are at. My initial project was a scoping exercise and thus my own level of responsibility, and thus business was not very high. However, the following projects saw me working across multiple tasks with regular deadlines and therefore I was very busy. Accenture also prides itself on "extra-curricular" and networking events which I was keen to get involved in. As a result of this, I was busier than normal but it was very much worth it as it contributed to making my placement year a fantastic experience.
As aforementioned, my first project was a quiet one and therefore I wasn't given much responsibility. When I joined the other projects, it started out similarly but by proving myself in performing other tasks and volunteering to help out with other work streams, I became a dependable member of the project and thus was given more responsibility by my colleagues.
During my placement year, I attended a number of training sessions and also learnt skills from my managers. The ability to use analytics software has been useful for my degree whilst the communication skills I developed have been useful in my role as a Student Ambassador on Campus. A large majority of the skills I developed will greatly help me when I graduate and let me hit the ground running upon returning to Accenture.
The atmosphere in the office can vary greatly depending the project you are on and whether you are based on the client site or not. For me, each of my projects had an extremely fun atmosphere with regular social events and team days. I have made a number of friends during my placement year that I most likely will keep for life.
From the minute I applied to Accenture, the whole process was seamless. The induction week provided a great introduction to Accenture and was very enjoyably giving us a taste of what consulting is like and the essentials you need to navigate Accenture. Not only this, but during our time at the firm, we were fortunate enough to have a dedicated placement people advisor who helped us with any issues we had and check up on how we were doing.
Despite only being a placement student, the amount of personal training and development I received was incredible. From the opening week to various training sessions on agile ways of working and analytics, I felt that Accenture truly cares about the development of their colleagues. The opportunities were endless and my only regret is that I couldn't do all of them!
I have left my placement year with an offer for employment upon graduation.
There were 11 placement students in total on the placement year and we would regularly meet up for drinks or social events which made work even more enjoyable. We are also able to talk to each other about the different areas of the business we were each working in and find opportunities for others to try new projects.
The cost of living and socialising in London is always going to be high and this is perhaps one of the very few negatives about doing a placement in London. I was lucky enough to be able to live at home which saved a large amount of money.
London's nightlife was another of the main reasons I enjoyed the placement so much. There is always something on after work or on the weekend which meant that you would never get bored when you are not working.
As aforementioned, one of Accenture's greatest features is the number of extra-curricular and sports societies that run every week. There is truly something for everyone at the firm ranging from book clubs to sports teams that play every week. Not only this, but workshops are run on mental health and diversity which I found to be fascinating.