1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
I work in the front office Surveillance Monitoring Team and we monitor all post trade violations that may occur on the funds the M&G manage. These range from regulatory set rules all the way to internal/house rules. My main tasks include dealing with violations when they occur and reaching out to the relevant teams and working out why the incident occurred.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Coming straight from 6th form I had no real world experience when it came to finance, the extent of my knowledge was A Level economics. Being in a financial environment I've learnt more academic skills with regard to finance and investment, constantly being around financial instruments and funds, whilst also improving my communication skills having to adapt the way I use language to suit the job at hand. Furthermore the support network available gives the opportunity to further existing skills such as IT, financial based maths and English.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
Enrolling with M&G, quite simply, was the best choice that I could have made. Going to Uni was never really the best option for me and being able to learn and work in an industry that appeals to me, and gaining experience which could be worth more than a degree in years to come means that the enjoyment and satisfaction is all the more.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The program is well structured with a level of flexibility allowing it to be catered to each individual, whether you prefer to take things a bit slower, or like me, if you prefer to go at things promptly and get all the exams and studying done at a faster pace, both M&G and FWD accommodate that to an extent.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
The support I receive from my line manager, my team and my contact in HR is easily enough to ensure that I'm never falling behind targets and that I'm meeting and exceeding expectations. There is an atmosphere within M&G that you can talk to and ask anyone for help if you need it. This seems to be the culture of the entire company.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
FWD are constantly in contact with regard to the exams and the qualification. The freedom to choose your own exam dates/times with the support and advice of your trainer, who will specifically cater targets for each trainee means that whenever there is a query, or assistance needed, it's just an email away.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
Without doing the qualification, the only knowledge of the financial industry would have to come from my day to day job. Whilst this may be sufficient for certain elements of knowledge, having an overview of the entire investment sector means that my knowledge isn't just limited to what I do as part of my job, which will help in the future, if I decided to go for another role with M&G.
8. Are there extra-curricular activities to get involved in at your work? (For example, any social activities, sports teams, or even professional networking events.)
There are various extra curricular activities to participate in, within the apprentice cohort, and M&G wide. There are often messages sent to the entire company regarding upcoming open events whilst the social network within M&G means that you can get to know all different people with the firm. In terms of networking professionally, Investment 2020 constantly arrange events allowing you to broaden your current social network.
9a. Would you recommend M&G Investments to a friend?
Hearing from other apprentices in different firms, I understand that my role as an apprentice within M&G is not just seen as someone to file all the paperwork or push a few buttons here and there. Within M&G I am a respected member of staff, plus the fixed contract after the course has finished ensures that I have a job and a qualification whilst university students are only halfway through their second year.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to M&G Investments?
Do research. Whatever you can find out about M&G will only help you seem more interested and genuinely want to join this company. Also make sure that in your spare time you don't just sit around. Do any and all activities which will make you seem like a better candidate/person than anyone else going for the same role.
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