1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I work in Fixed Income Credit Research, we have a team of analysts who analyse companies to check how able they are to pay back their debt. Fund managers utilise their knowledge and make investment decisions based on their expertise. My role is to support the credit analysts, this entails creating reports, updating financial models, creating graphs and charts to help make data easier to understand, attend meetings, maintain our internal research system, informing fund managers of corporate actions etc.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
My excel skills have improved greatly, so has my personal confidence; I feel more comfortable approaching colleagues and taking control of situations, speaking up in meetings etc. My knowledge of finance industry has grown due to studying the Investment Operations Certificate and attending investment sessions hosted by M&G and Investment 2020.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
The company culture is great, there is a flat hierarchy structure so I feel confident enough to approach senior staff. I enjoyed my apprenticeship a lot, I feel extremely privileged to be given the opportunities to learn, study and be mentored.
4. How valued do you feel by M&G Investments?
Hard work is recognised.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The programme has been very well organised from the start from HR. I was paired up with a buddy, had meetings with HR every few months to discuss my progress and any concerns. I also received regular feedback from my manager. I would have liked a bit more help with the studying aspect as I felt this was completely independent, but that is something that the apprenticeship provider is responsible for.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
Although I did have a few assessors I found all of them to be extremely helpful and organised. They responded timely to all my questions and were very clear on what was needed for our next meeting. I enjoyed having meetings with someone outside of the firm because they gave good advice and shared their experiences with me. I would have liked a bit more support with the qualification, for example more past papers and revision lessons but I didn't struggle to complete the qualification independently as I found A levels much more challenging.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I had regular catch ups with HR but less so with my own manager.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
My salary met my needs well, as I live at home I don't have many outgoings although I understand for those having to rent in London they had to budget significantly more. Social costs are quite high working in the city but that is to be expected, living in zone 2 travelling costs were low.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Lots of company events such as Chelsea Flower Show, Investment 2020 insight events, volunteering opportunities, school presentations and quiz nights.
9a. Would you recommend M&G Investments to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
Well structured programme, great opportunities to meet new people and learn. Great place to get your foot in the door as a school leaver. Reasonable working hours compared to the industry. Friendly people and caring environment.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to M&G Investments? *
Do your research on Asset Management, do not confuse it with Investment Banking! Practice the online aptitude tests before completing the real ones. Have as much interview practice as possible, come prepared with questions and research the role in depth.
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