1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
My role was as a trainee finance officer and overlapped many of the functions of a modern day FMCG company. I was in charge of ensuring new product launches were financially viable and worked closely with the marketing division to ensure promotions were built in to launches and entered financial calculations.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
My skills largely centred around learning how Finance works in an FMCG which is quite different to that in a traditional banking environment. I also developed my interpersonal and technical skills as a result of the role but I feel there could have been more emphasis on soft skill development on the day-to-day, rather than just having one day of the training being labelled as 'soft skill day' which we had.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
It was highly competitive and I felt at times that my contribution was going unnoticed to the more favoured candidates and to the employees who already had experience in their roles. Having said that the projects I was working on were varied and relatively interesting and my satisfaction with the work was on a par with other apprenticeships I have been on.
4. How valued do you feel by P&G?
As I touched on in the previous question, on many an occasion I felt like 'one of the numbers' where my contributions were often overlooked. This is not the same treatment I have received at other apprenticeships however it is likely it was more a case of the division I was in rather than being representative of P&G as a global company.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The Programme had a broad structure but it was often down to the candidate to create his own structure. I didn't mind this as it often allowed me the flexibility to structure my own working day. There were clear goals set in place however which were evaluated at the end of each week.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
Support from my line manager was average at best and support received from those higher up the hierarchy was next to non existent and I feel that this may have been indicative of my particular division where there were clear favourites who received preferential treatment and support. I have heard better from the experience of others.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I have now finished my training and we are no longer in communication. I will be working at Vodafone in September where I have heard that the level of support for graduates is fantastic and they encourage flexible working within small teams to allow for easy communication. At present I am unemployed.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
My salary is £30k which I feel is competitive for a graduate starting work. Having said that I could always do with more money and my costs tend to match whatever I am earning so I need to improve my spending habits and perhaps be stricter with my savings. My day to day costs will actually be fairly low as I can stay at home so will save on rent and I live near the workplace.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
I have heard that experiences outside work are highly encouraged at Vodafone and there are many sporting and social societies which hold regular meet ups. In terms of work related opportunities I believe that having a position in a top FTSE 100 company will greatly increase my employability going forward.
9. Would you recommend P&G to a friend?
I simply did not feel that the support I personally received was comparable to that of other companies or that was received by other candidates on the same course. So for that reason I will not be personally recommending it to anyone but I wouldn't use that as an excuse to deter people as I know many people who have enjoyed successful internships here.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to P&G?
I would say that the tips are largely the same as applying to other companies. My top tips would be to know the reason you want to work there, be passionate about the company and what it does, and think about how the qualities you can extract from your personal experiences can be applied to the job role, even if you do not have direct experience in that role.
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