My role as ‘HR, administrator and training’ was to provide support to the Senior HR Consultant on training and development initiatives, whilst also participating in a range of project work. To act in a research role, conduct data analysis to support the HR Consultants and General Manager, HR and Facilities with strategic projects.
As a member of the HR team I was responsible for the student recruitment, organising training activities, reviewing and updating workplace policies and updating and maintaining employment records. I attended recruitment fairs and represented Toyota at various events across a number of universities, screening applicants to find the most suitable candidates.
1. To what extent did you enjoy your work placement or internship?
My placement year was a great experience that I would highly recommend. There was so many opportunities/projects to get involved in, in and out of work. Everyone in the office is very friendly and there is a big community of students at Toyota which was great for socials.
2. To what extent did you feel valued by your colleagues?
At not one point in my placement did I feel like a 'placement student'. You get treated as an employee, and are given real responsibility for real, current projects.
3. To what extent were you given support and guidance by management/your supervisor(s)?
There was always someone I could talk to if I faced a problem at work, whether it be my manager, the general manager or other colleagues.
4. How busy were you on a daily basis?
Working in the HR department meant that I was constantly busy. My workload was challenging at times, but it kept me on my toes.
My role meant that I got network with people all over the business which was an invaluable opportunity.
5. How much responsibility were you given during your placement?
During my placement I was responsible for many projects and tasks including organising training for employees, updating workplace policies, student recruitment and much more. I was pleasantly surprised at how much responsibility I was given; everything I did had importance and this acted as a real motivator for me.
6. To what extent did/will the skills you developed, and training you received, assist you in your degree studies and beyond?
In my role I was able to develop my time management and organisational skills which are invaluable for my last year of studies at university. Not only was I able to develop a range of skills, I was also able to increase my confidence which will help my greatly when applying for graduate schemes.
7. What was the general atmosphere in your office?
The office environment was one of the best aspects of the placement- Everyone is very friendly, and welcoming. There are often different activities going on around the office i.e a range of activities take place around Christmas, bbq's in summer which all create a sense of fun around the office.
At lunch all students tend to take the same break which was always a highlight to my day.
8. How well organised was the overall work placement or internship set up?
The whole placement experience was very well organised.
9. In terms of personal training and development, to what extent did the company or firm invest in you?
Toyota invest time in training all placement students on the culture and values of the company. In addition to this, I was given the opportunity to attend various training programmes where I needed to develop my skills that were required for the job.
My manager was very supportive in giving me the opportunity to develop my skills on the job and on training courses.
10. What were the perks on your work placement?
Sports and Social Club
11. How appealing are future employment prospects within the organisation?
I would love to be given the opportunity to work for Toyota after finishing university.
* It is important to note that in order to apply for their gradate scheme you must have completed a placement year at Toyota.
12. Was there a good social scene amongst any fellow placement students/colleagues?
Yes! There was a sports and social club that arranged many activities outside of work. For example, Rounders tournaments, karaoke nights, summer bbqs and much more.
In addition to this, lots of the students tend to get together after work and on weekends to hang out and socialise.
13. What was the cost of living and socialising in the area you worked in?
The cost of living is rather expensive, however for me it was totally worth it because central London was only a 40 minute train journey away.
14. What was the Nightlife like in the area you worked?
Epsom is ok for a night out. ( I wouldnt recommend)
London is so close I often went out there. I loved it!
15. Were there many opportunities to get involved in activities outside of work?
Through socialising at work I was able to get involved in a 270 mile Charity bike ride to Toyota's HQ in Brussels over the course of 3 days. This was a fantastic experience that I would highly recommend to anyone (providing you are fit) This provided many opportunities for socialising outside of work.