I thoroughly enjoyed my internship at this company. Working within both the Simcenter Flotherm XT and Reduced Order Modelling Team allowed me to learn a host of software and applications necessary for testing. I also had many great opportunities to get involved in additional activities outside testing such as attending careers fairs and creating video tutorials, which greatly developed my overall skillset. The ability to hone these skills into a project conducted over the year was a fantastic experience.
I felt immensely valued by my colleagues throughout my internship. During meetings and general conversations, I have always been encouraged to share my opinions and ideas. I felt any ideas I suggested were considered and so this helped build my confidence greatly. Working with such a supportive team has been a great experience and I look to replicate the same work environment in my future endeavours. I was treated as an employee rather than simply a student intern and always tasked with work of importance to the software teams.
When I began the internship I had very little knowledge of the software industry as well as how teams operated to complete complex tasks. This has since drastically improved with the support and guidance of both team members and management. They allowed me to manoeuvre around challenges faced throughout the year and I never felt alone in my struggles. I was provided with a lot of useful suggestions when it came to working on a project, which improved my networking across various departments within the company.
Generally, I had enough workload to not feel overwhelmed when meeting deadlines. There were periods of higher workloads, before software releases, and periods of quieter workloads, post-release of the latest software versions. This improved my time management skills as I had to plan a schedule to deal with completing a large number of tasks during a short period, but also prepare activities to get involved in during times where the workload was a minimum to stay busy.
I was given a steady increase in responsibility for the course of my internship. In the beginning, I was given a chance to digest new information and settle into the company. As time went on the responsibility with respect to testing and presenting those findings greatly improved. This was through increased testing tasks, validation work and more opportunities to present the results in review meetings. In addition, I was provided with greater flexibility in terms of testing approaches, which really helped build my critical thinking skills.
The internship was an invaluable experience to both learn new skills and develop existing skills. Completing Siemens training courses greatly improved my understanding of both company infrastructure and the importance of security. I have mainly developed my confidence by working with both staff and managers. My problem solving and critical thinking has also improved by tackling all the challenges faced during testing software. I feel these are very applicable skills to both university projects as well as my future career path.
The office atmosphere was relaxed and felt like a safe environment. Staff members were very friendly and always willing to help with any problems that arose. I had a great office set up with plenty of desk space and 3 monitors to carry out multiple tasks at the same time. The office had great lighting indoors and was a nice atmosphere to get a lot of work done. There was plenty of parking space which was great when driving to work.
Overall the placement was set up well. There were some IT issues at the beginning which were later fixed. Product Training days were set up at the start of the placement which allowed to get an understanding of all the software available within the company and what products other interns would be working on. We also had an opportunity to take part in DiSC training which gave us personality traits related to work and advice on how to work better with people.
When travelling up to other offices to conduct training all expenses such as transportation, hotels, and food were paid for by the company. I was provided with a host of Siemens training courses to complete to get a better understanding of the company policies. The laptops I had to work on were very fast and able to handle a host of processes. I was provided with additional virtual machines to carry out multiple tasks at the same time.
This company has great welcoming employees and a fantastic work environment. I would be happy to work with them in the future under a different role should the opportunity arise. The company is well rebounded and I'm sure will continue to grow and get bigger. There is a host of software to work on which all have a large number of capabilities. They have great benefits to support extracurricular activities such as going to the gym or providing staff discounts
There were many interns in other offices to socialise with. We had weekly lunch at a restaurant which became a day everyone looked forward to. Travelling up to other offices within the country was great fun and allowed the interns to socialise outside work. There was a lot of collaborative work between staff across teams which built a strong relationship with colleagues. This made asking for help and support very easy and was a great environment to work in.
I was travelling from home during my placement. What I can say is the area of work is an expensive place to live as it is on the border of London. Houses and flats are priced very high and it may be difficult to find a place which is cheap enough to support yourself. It may be worth sharing a place with other interns that end up working in the same office to help to reduce the cost of living.
There are nightclubs in the area but this is not something I took part in. The social aspect was mainly focused on eating out at local restaurants. However, for those interesting in Nightlife, there are opportunities to go to clubs in the area or even travel into central London as the office I worked in was at the end of London. There was a lot of transportation links to travel to areas of high interest.
There were not many opportunities to get involved outside of work. That being said, there was a lot of support and encouragement to be active. I regularly go to the gym and was supported through the company benefits which paid for my gym membership. I am aware there was also support for individuals that cycled to work. There are opportunities to set up your own activities with other interns or colleagues outside of work to make the most of your time.