Amrit is a Business Management student from The University of Birmingham. For his placement year he joined Allegion (UK) Ltd. Amrit has recently made the final of the ACCA Future CFO Undergraduate of the Year competition.
I saw the initial vacancy on my University’s career page and applied straight away. After reviewing my CV, Tamsin from Step called me for a short interview. I was then invited to the Allegion office for another interview before being offered the job – I was thrilled! At first, I was slightly hesitant in accepting the job; I asked myself “am I 100% sure I want to do a placement year?” I spoke to Tamsin for advice and she strongly recommended that I take the job and I haven’t looked back since.
My role in Product Management has been highly enjoyable. My main duties involved working on a pricing project which would affect all customers and creating product range databases as a crucial hub of information for the business going forward. As well as this, I worked with the marketing team on the launch of the new website and with customers to deal with any inquiries. I wasn’t always in the office – I had the opportunity to attend a nationwide trade expo and visit some architects in the local area.
I developed a whole host of skills, from basic Excel tricks to presenting in front of international colleagues. I developed an understanding of global selling strategies and learned about key business concepts such as the Pareto principle. Along the way, I learned more and more about the products that Allegion offer and followed these products from the supplier contracting stage right until the point of sale.
Cliché as it may sound; the most valuable trait that I developed as a result of my placement was confidence. I have seen a massive difference in my ability to communicate effectively, which is an invaluable skill. In fact, without this placement I would not have had the confidence to even apply let alone make the final of the ACCA Future CFO Undergraduate of the Year competition, nor make my university’s Business Society committee next year.
You can learn all the textbook theory in the world, but until you are in a real-life working environment you will never truly pick up the skills needed to survive in the workplace, and for that I am truly grateful that I found this placement. My advice for any student thinking to do a placement year is simply to just do it. Your future self will thank you and to employers you will stand out from the crowd.