Due to the COVID-19 crisis I think the bank went above and beyond to ensure that we were able to gain an insight into our respective divisions and that we could develop over the month that we were interning online. We were given various opportunities and the bank adapted well to the new scenario we had all been put in. We were able to network with graduates and other interns and more senior personnel which was a glimpse of what the graduate role would entail.
The time and commitment the bank put in to ensure that we had something to engage in everyday for the duration of the internship really showed how much they value their interns and the amount of effort they put in to quickly change the entire format of the programme. To gain a similar experience to what we would have had in the office was hard to achieve but with the talks from various MD's and CFO's I think the bank was successful in doing so.
During the course of the programme each intern was assigned a buddy, this ensured that if we were to face any issues they were on hand for support which gave us that more one on one experience. Also they provided us with guidance for university to then transferring into graduate jobs. The advice we also received for development and for progressing into our professional careers also was very helpful to understand how we can better ourselves.
The advice received was very helpful for personal development, such as things we can do to make ourselves stand out when trying to apply for graduate roles. In addition understanding how we can take our degree studies further and the skills that we can transfer from that into our careers. We also were able to learn how the finance world is changing and how we can try get ahead of the curve by developing skills in different areas beyond our degrees alone.
The virtual experience was structured very well and was very engaging. The ensured that all interns were involved and made the internship programme very interactive by allocating us into smaller groups to complete tasks and challenges. Having division specific tasks to complete also was structured very well since they shadowed what we would be doing on a day to day basis during the graduate programme progressing forward. The zoom conferences were well structured as well as the more interactive sessions to do with mindfulness.
During the virtual experience I felt that the team worked very hard to make sure that the calls and the tasks we were given were engaging and that we would have opportunities to speak to other interns and collaborate with different people from different divisions. The team really lifted moral and thought of fun ways to present over zoom and for us to provide our input into the topics in discussion. Overall amongst the interns and the early careers team the general atmosphere was very good.
Every task or call we engaged in the goal and the message was about our personal development. From the start the fact that RBS ensured that we still had experience and that the internship was not cancelled due to COVID-19 really made it clear that they invest in their interns and that for them it was essential that we still gained this virtual experience. The company by providing us each with a buddy made sure our feedback was heard and that our needs were catered to.
From this virtual experience and the zoom calls we engaged in, I feel that the bank did their best to give us a preview of what it would be like to have a full time role there. The format in which they set out the day and the tasks we were given were similar to what we would be given if offered a graduate role which helped us understand the challenges we could face day to day.
From the start it was clear that the company is very close knit and that they value the welfare of the staff especially since they paid close attention to each of the interns needs and adjusted according to any issues or feedback we had. I also was able to understand the interaction between the teams and how they work as individuals but collaborate to overcome challenges and support one another in all that they do.
The content helped me understand the companies ethic and their purpose. I understand what they do right now to help customers but also their future plans to better themselves which was helpful for me moving forward since I learnt the business sector that would suit me. Not only were we given business specific insight we also were given advice and knowledge on self development and growth which was very helpful in understanding where I would fit in.
The internship usually runs for ten weeks over the summer but to accommodate for the current crisis the bank shortened it to four weeks over the moth of July. I do not feel as though I missed out on any key opportunities and the bank exceeded my expectations on how they were able to relay the same experience virtually. I did not expect to be paid and I was very grateful for the experience but the fact that the bank still paid all of the interns shows the importance they give every individual.
There were multiple networking opportunities given to us and with all talks we were given over zoom there was plenty of time for questions and answers so that we were able to interact with more senior personnel. If we wanted to get in touch with people directly our buddies or the early careers team helped us do so and this allowed us to gain a broader view of the bank. Networking was put at the forefront of the internship.
during the internship we heard multiple talks from the corporate social responsibility council about the charity work they do and how they help the Princes Trust. We were also able to part take in a CSR challenge to help raise money for the Princes Trust but also to collaborate with other interns from different business divisions. This gave us the opportunity to be creative and also to work within a short time frame to do the best we could.
The virtual experience exceeded my expectations and I did not think I would have gained this many skills or knowledge through zoom calls. The work that RBS put into making sure that the internship was engaging and interesting was exceptional and I would recommend this to a friend because in 4 weeks if I was able to develop this much then there is a huge scope for development given that the internship resumes to 10 weeks.
6th August 2020