Has been thoroughly enjoyable, colleagues have been great, work has kept me engaged and experience has been perfect for what I needed. I have been tested and have progressed since joining the company and hope to utilise what I have learnt when I apply the findings to examinations and work within the final year of university. So far in my placement I would say my excitement of joining has stayed consistent and there hasn't really been a dull day.
I feel extremely valued by my colleagues, since joining BDO I was encouraged to develop working relationships with staff and I have always felt I can talk to anyone and they would be positive. It really is the best thing about BDO that the employees are all great individuals. I know that even after my placement has concluded I will keep in touch with certain members that I have become friends with despite the circumstances.
There was never a moment I felt lonely or felt as if I couldn't confide in my management as they were more than just a superior team member but they were like a mentor always wanting the best for me and treating me like an asset. If I felt as if my work quality was slacking or if I had a specific issue they were always on hand to provide assistance to the best of their abilities.
How busy I was remains variable I believe. There have been quieter days and there have been busier days. Towards the beginning of the placement when I had joined I was always busy as I was in a long term call for the whole day learning off by "buddy" who was teaching me the business functions and processes. Then once I was made more independent I would have to utilise quieter days to remain productive and then more recently busier days have been extremely busy!
I believe as the placement has progressed I have been given more and more responsibility when BDO have felt it was appropriate to do so. This depended on how fast I was picking information up and when I was making less mistakes as in KYC review it is essential to review documents and responsibility coincides with comfortability and the ability to review forms efficiently and ensure no MLRO risks or reputational risks are placed on the company.
I am receiving a conglomerate range of skills which I do believe I can apply as my life skills as well as in my degree studies and hope to do so too. My placement hasn't even reached its halfway mark and there is still so much more to learn and skills to acquire as upskilling is encouraged at BDO with a helpful training page with a wide range of services which I can use to enhance myself.
I cannot comment generally on the office atmosphere due to working from home so it was essentially a virtual world. However, it is a great atmosphere as we have regularly calls with the team on a daily basis to catch up and the social element enriches the job role and gives it a playful environment and helps me get along with the colleagues. This helped build friendships and with team building exercises it feels even better.
Everything set up and organised has worked in a fluid motion at BDO and it has never felt as if there was a problem despite the unprecedented circumstances that COVID-19 has presented everybody with. I felt as if there would be struggles but this was quickly relieved when BDO would send regular emails and my equipment explaining everything to help the onboarding process and help us to deal with all that was going on with joining in those times.
As I have mentioned before, upskilling is heavily encouraged at BDO and the training page provided is incredibly appealing and effective meaning that I believe BDO has heavily invested. Developing me as a worker, they have also invested as I always feel supported and never have felt that I wasn't valued by management as extension to the company itself. I believe it is one of the biggest attributes that BDO ensure to provide the best experience possible for a student.
Staff Sales/Staff Shop
Above 25 days holiday
Working from home
Employment prospects are often advertised and talked about within daily calls for existing colleagues as well as for placement students where they see whether young employees have potential to become future partners through a scheme exclusive to BDO. I believe hearing about the range of opportunities keeps me motivated while working and makes me feel as if I can stay long term even once I conclude my placement and finally graduate which would be great.
As if have preached numerous times, the social scene amongst colleagues is the greatest thing about working at BDO and I thoroughly enjoy and appreciate every single one of the employees as I can see the BDO values flows through them and they are so approachable. With the placement students we had a big call where we got connected into a facebook group which we communicate in and there has been a social scene created there.
As I have been there for university the cost of living and socialising is what I know and expect anyway as I have been there for two years already. I believe compared to the majority of areas for how sublime the city is the cost is merely a fraction of the experience and does equate to being incredibly cheap overall. Due to working from home and lockdown I have not spent much time in the city unfortunately.
The nightlife in Liverpool needs no introduction and the area of my work is very close to concert square which I believe is one of the best in the country for nightlife, especially having spent two years there already as a student. The atmosphere is electric and the amount of people out is unbelievable it is an unreal experience. I'm speaking from general as nightlife has been restricted since COVID-19 has become part of life.
Given the circumstances I believe there has been a lot of opportunities where available. Potentially if life was like normal there would be a lot more but BDO really is doing whatever it can to accommodate and still keep employees engaged in these troubling times which does definitely get noticed. I am currently volunteering as BDO believes heavily in CSR and I feel honoured to represent BDO and help out in the wider community with this opportunity.
Placement Year (10 Months+)
19th November 2020