My placement year at Nissan has been extremely enjoyable and at the same time extremely rewarding. My colleagues made me feel very welcome from day one and I felt a very valued member of the team who completed important tasks for the business to keep functioning. Unfortunately due to Coronavirus, I was furloughed for a period of around 2/3 months, however I got to experience working from home once I returned from furlough which was a good experience.
From day one, my colleagues made me feel extremely valued and welcome. I was assigned tasks which were an important part of the business in which my colleagues assisted me whenever I needed assistance with specific tasks. Unfortunately due to COVID, I did not get to spend as much time with my team outside of work socially as I would have liked to. However, we always had fun at work which made sometimes quite long and stressful days fly by.
My manager at Nissan couldn't have been more helpful and accommodating. I felt extremely grateful to have been placed in a team with such a hard working and conscious manager. However, due to the nature of the time I joined Nissan on placement, there were times which I felt a little bit in the dark and left to my own devices in situations were some extra guidance and support would have been appreciated. Overall, I felt the support was good.
As the year progressed, my responsibilities grew so over time I became busier. Towards the start of my placement, I did sometimes feel as though I didn't have much to do and at times the days were very long. As time went on however, my daily tasks increased and my days didn't seem to be as long as they were at the start of my placement. If you ever feel that you don't have enough work or you have too much, I think its always best to let your supervisor know this.
At the start of my placement I didn't have much responsibility but I guess that this is when you are learning the ropes and becoming familiar with the business. Towards the end of my placement I felt that I was given increasing amounts of responsibility through the various tasks that I was appointed. I was satisfied with the amount of responsibility that I was given by the end of my 13 month placement year at Nissan.
One thing for sure is that I didn't realise how much you can do on Excel. Going back in to my final year at university, I think this is definitely a skill which will be useful for my final year at uni and also when applying for final year graduate jobs. In addition to this I have further developed my communication skills. This is both with my colleagues and various different suppliers throughout the week.
The office had a friendly atmosphere- we had breakout tables for lunch and breaks which were good for socialising and everyone would always say hello and make conversation in the corridors/kitchen. The only thing I would say is that our desks separate us from seeing the person opposite you so sometimes I felt like I was shouting over the other side of my computer so that my colleagues could hear what I was saying to them.
The placement was well organised. We had a 3 day induction at the start which went through various admin aspects of our placement and we even got a tour of the plant which was interesting. Once I got to my department on the fourth day, I received various different talks from different areas of my office which was useful to know how the business worked on the whole and also helped to introduce me to the members of staff.
Sports and Social Club
Above 25 days holiday
Working from home
Unfortunately due to COVID the future job prospects are somewhat uncertain. I would love to go back to Nissan and work as a graduate however there is some uncertainty as to how many positions will be available for the intake of 2021 when I graduate. It would be lovely to go back to such a lovely working environment and perhaps try out a new section or department to gain a greater insight in to Nissan UK.
This was one thing which I was slightly disappointed with. I worked on a site outside of the plant itself with 3 other placement students so sometimes I felt a little bit isolated from the other placement students. We had one team day out organised for Christmas in Newcastle which was lovely however more of these would have been nice so that we could have kept in touch with other placements. We were also meant to do various charity events and volunteering with other placements but unfortunately this didn't happen.
The North East is typically a relatively cheap place to live and socialise compared to other companies down South such as London. I lived at home whilst at placement so my costs of living were relatively low. My main expense was probably petrol which I spent around £40 per week on. There is plenty of things to do around Nissan as the location is close to the sea side but also close to the country too!
I lived at home whilst on placement as I was lucky enough to be within driving distance however the nightlife around Nissan is really good. You've got Newcastle which is only a 20 minute drive and really good for food/drinks/shopping. You also have Durham which isn't far away and a lovely place for food and drinks. At Christmas time they do a display on the Cathedral which is really nice to get you in to the Christmas spirit.
Placement Year (10 Months+)
29th October 2020