Why did you decide to undertake a professional placement year?
I undertook a placement year for two reasons, the first was to gain insight into what direction I would like to take once I leave university. The second reason was to apply the skills I had learned throughout school and university into practice, specifically in a role that was linked to politics.
Why did you decide to apply to ATOS?
I decided to apply to Atos because it aligned with my own personal interests of business and technology, with Atos being a key player in the tech industry. The company is at the forefront of innovation through technology such as AI, which heightened my interest in working for them.
Do you have any top tips for succeeding in the application process?
When applying its important to understand why you want to apply for the role/company, as well as why this is an opportunity you want to undertake. Placement is a great experience and working in a role / company you are passionate about can make the year even more enjoyable.
What kind of duties and responsibilities did you have in your placement role?
My role was in Public Affairs, which meant I supported on the production and latter campaigning of reports such as the Digital Vision for Farming or the Great British Enterprise Campaign. I also was involved in wider campaign aspects such as roundtables and events as well as stakeholder management.
What did you expect from a placement before you started and what actually happened?
My expectations for a year placement was for a year long learning experience, where I developed my current skills alongside gaining new abilities during the year. The reality of placement was beyond my expectations, not only did I learn and grow throughout the year, I became much more capable than I believed I ever could.
What was your biggest achievement during your placement?
My biggest achievement during placement was becoming an article contributor on the Digital Vision for Mobility report, alongside subject matter experts across industry on the future of road, rail, personal mobility and logistics.
What was the biggest challenge you faced on your placement?
The biggest challenge I faced on placement was getting to grips with a commute into London as opposed to walking 10 minutes to lectures. Downloading tv shows on my phone helped!
Were there any key projects that you worked on during the placement year? If so, what did they involve and what was the outcome?
I was involved in the Digital Vision for Mobility campaign, supporting throughout the production of the report and wider campaigning upon release. A key outcome was the report featuring in SmartCitiesWorld.
What new skills did you learn on placement?
I significantly developed the skill of writing for different purposes and audiences, to produce content which was targeted effectively.
I gained further skills in understanding the variety of aspects which are involved in a communications campaign as well as developing my networking skills, communicating with a variety of stakeholders from graduate to senior management level.
How will doing a placement benefit you in your final year/ the future?
The increase in productivity as well as creativity has massively boosted me in my final year, I feel much more rounded and organised than I was at the end of my second year. For the future I had gained valuable professional experience which will benefit me as I start my career and beyond.
How do you feel the organisation has benefitted from employing a placement student?
Placement students are valuable given they provide an organisation with a new perspective, fresh from academia with a host of new ideas. Organisations can gain understanding of how the next generation view specific topics and issues for the future, meaning that it is a learning experience for both the student and the organisation. Furthermore, placement students can eventually be potential graduates within the organisation, who already have a years’ worth of experience.