Shehzmani Shams is a current Informatics student at King’s College London. In this entry of Global Placement Stories, Shehzmani Shams describes a typical day at work, and what she’s learnt from it so far.
I work in the ‘Savings and Investments’ lab and my official title within the team is of a Quality Engineer. My day typically starts at 9AM with a standup meeting with the rest of my team, serving as a check in so everyone is on the same page and updated about what’s going on in the lab. After that I continue on with my work, doing various tasks and taking meetings, till 5PM when I log off.
My life was very different a year ago at this time- instead of working on tickets and checking logs I was busy with assessment centers, applications and giving my 20th HireVue interview at 3AMbut a year later, and halfway through my placement, I can confidently say that it was worth it.
A placement not only enhances your CV greatly, giving you a year’s worth of experience in the field, before you graduate, but also it’s an opportunity for you to enter a role of responsibility, where you are treated like any normal permanent employee and incharge of your own tasks. It allows you to be more independent, whilst also strengthening your team work skills.
If I was to pick the three biggest things I learnt from my placement so far it would be:
- Don’t be afraid to tell someone that you don’t know something: People in your workplace know that you’re a placement student, and they don’t expect you to know everything. I have never been reprimanded for not knowing a concept or how to carry out a particular task- rather- people are more than happy to help teach you something new.
- Make sure you manage your time well: You’re an employee of the company and so you have to be professional. All your work is done towards a bigger goal for the company, so make sure you don’t slack off.
- Your team will be welcoming, so don’t be shy: I’ve been very lucky to be surrounded by a team that is extremely uplifting of one another, and are always there no matter the circumstance (work or personal). Make sure you’re polite and friendly- people want to get to know you when you join, so be friendly, and don’t think that you’re considered an ‘outsider’.
Something my line manager told me in the beginning that still resonates with me to this day was- “Don’t be afraid to reach out to anyone you’d like. You’re extremely welcome here, in fact, we requested to have you here as a placement student- so don’t worry if you don’t know anyone or anything, we’ll be there to help you just like you’re helping us.”
If you’ve gotten a placement, congratulations- and if you’re still looking, don’t lose hope. The experience is worth it.