1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
As a scholarship intern we take on the role of a consultant in EY's advisory division. Whilst no day is the same because of the variety of projects some daily tasks that can be expected are: attending meetings, networking with colleagues, creating and pitching presentations, working with excel and attending to individual project requirements. From day one you are given responsibility that effectively contributes to a projects outcome, though this may seem daunting at first you have the full support of everyone to help reach your objectives. At EY I always felt engaged and even though I was inexperienced, that did not stop me from contributing to project success and increasing my abilities.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Whilst on the scholarship programme I was able to extend key social skills in the form of 'networking' that became invaluable for making the most of my placement. Furthermore I was also able to extend my Microsoft office skills, primarily in excel and powerpoint that allowed me to create the most effective work that depicted and enhanced my ideas.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
EY's scholarship programme is one of the best that are currently available to ambitious and diligent students. You are surrounded by likeminded individuals who support you every step of the way; be it your co-workers, managers, mentors or other scholar's. The company culture of inclusiveness meant I never felt left out, providing me with the confidence to speak to any person if I needed help, regardless of their status, as you will often find senior partners working alongside interns.
4. How valued do you feel by EY?
EY's company culture means it invests in its employees in order to become more productive and therefore profitable. Despite being at University, the company is regularly in contact to see how you are doing, with social events organised throughout the year. I am still in contact with my managers from previous projects, the same managers who gave me constructive and encouraging feedback that helps me to improve the work I produce. Despite being relatively novice to the world of consulting, I felt my opinion was always valued and was even given the chance to make part of the project my own.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The programme is very well structured with each scholar getting an intern manager, buddy (to help with any issues) and a career counsellor (to help you plan your career with a plan on how to meet your personal objectives). Before each placement there are 3 days of inductions that help to refresh key skills as well as teach you new ones. Despite the fact everyone is in different sectors and of different ages and stages of the scholarship scheme, the scheme integrates everyone to create the feeling of a year group that is similar to that at school.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
EY is very supportive, from the top to the bottom and everyone in between, you can feel confident that if you are unsure of something there is always someone willing to help. There are opportunities to build skills whilst working through the internal education scheme, so if find yourself with some spare time you can become more productive and boost your employability.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
My managers were always very encouraging, always making me feel appreciated and even when I did something not as expected, they were able to help me understand their point of view so that I could complete the task set to the best of my potential. My mentors also helped me to settle into EY very quickly as well as providing advice that proved useful on my projects and in my general life.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
Since the scheme is based in London I was able to live at home for the entirety of the programme, meaning a large reduction in living costs. EY offer a competitive salary that rewards you more than adequately for your hard work, with flexibility meaning that whilst you work hard, there are very few social costs as well as the fact that there are a number of social events organised throughout the year. However travel and food costs should be taken into account as the London Underground and local places for lunch are not cheap, though EY do have a good canteen within the main Head Office.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Regular social events organised both formally and informally mean that the whilst everyone is expected to work hard, they can also play hard in their free time. Each placement was kicked off with fun social events such as urban golf that allowed everyone to get to know each other. There are a number of sports teams available for everyone to join, though it might be nice to offer a discount for local gyms which are often expensive in London. All in all there is a lot of fun to be had with those you work with, helping to provide a healthy work/life balance.
9a. Would you recommend EY to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
EY provides the rounded package for anyone looking to enter into professional services. With one of the friendliest and supportive cultures of companies I have come across it is very difficult to not feel appreciated or included. The scope for opportunity is vast with every project providing a unique learning experience that not only makes the job worthwhile but also develops you as a person.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to EY? *
Apply early, don't be shy nor overconfident in the assessment days, make the most of the application process regardless of the outcome as it points out your strengths and weaknesses, practice the online tests before attempting the real ones as they are time pressured!
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