Learning the skills necessary to work with clients from a variety of different sectors in the world of actuary and accountancy
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
I thoroughly enjoyed my internship at PwC. Not only did I gain a wide array of skills in the workd of banking and accounting while working there, I also benefitted greatly from the very vigorous screening and interview process that I had to go through in order to be accepted for the internship.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
I did not feel that greatly valued by my colleagues in the sense that I was not able to contribute to their work on the grander scale but I rather helped them on smaller tasks. I feel as though my only real value to them was that they were able to explore subject matter much more in depth when they explained it to me and when I challenged them on certain topics.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
I was given a lot of support by not only the management team who arranged and oversaw the work that I was doing on the placement, but also the actual employees there as through them, I was able to see what actually goes on and how bookkeeping and stock trading actually works in the real world.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
I would never say that I was too busy as the work that I did was mainly learning about different topics, especially for the first half of my placement. Nearer to the end, where I got to apply my newfound knowledge, I always had people to help me and this, in a way, helped to relieve the stress of doing a lot of work.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
I was not given too much responsibility during my placement but I feel like I was given enough to feel useful as it did not just consist of menial tasks that were handed down to me but there were times where I was able to get involved with what the employees were doing and this was quite enjoyable as well.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
I think I definitely developed many actuarial skills and other skills that are important in the world of accounting as it is different seeing how things are done than reading about it from a textbook. I did receive some training on some basic tasks that would be expected from a junior accountant, which is invaluable to me.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
In general, I felt like the office was quite dull as everyone was quite focused on completing their work and did not really invest much time in building a proper relationship with me, which could at times be quite frustrating. This, however, helped me learn about the stressful and busy environment of working in accountancy.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
I think the overall work placement was set up quite well as there was a nice structure to the overall placement. I started off catching up on some junior accountancy qualities that were necessary for me to use by the end of the course so I definitely did pick up some vital skills through the structure of it.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
I think that the company did invest quite a lot in me as they, again, taught me many skills expected from a junior accountant. However, I feel like they could have taught me more as it did sometimes feel like I was going over the same stuff and performing repetitive tasks by the end.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I definitely would not say that this would improve my future employment prospects with PwC as many people took the internship at the same time as me and there is just such a high volume of job applications for PwC that I do not think this internship will help me to stand out greatly, even if it is with the company.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
There was not a great social scene between me and any of the colleagues working at the branch as everyone was so work-driven and seemed to not have time to build up relationships. I was not really able to meet with any other placement students as we would either work on different days or work at different branches.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
My office was based in London so I was able to commute to work when I had to go which was generally quite easy and probably a lot cheaper than having to move near the office. I do not really know much about the socialising opportunities near the office as I did not really get a chance to use them.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
I did not really get an opportunity to experience the nightlife in the area that I worked as there were not any opportunities where I really went out with other placement students or the colleagues. Furthermore, it was quite tiring working there so after a long day, I would much rather hop on the tube back rather than stay out for longer.
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
There were not really many opportunities to get involved with outside of work although there were a few that were within the workplace such as a few conferences and meetings with clients which were quite interesting to watch and see the corporate world being influenced by ideas that the company has thought of.