My placement experience at Park written by Chloe Macdonald

Every student like me will be sent on a work placement. A work placement is our first real view of working life and gives us a taster as what to expect when we are out in the working world. For some it can be rather daunting going into a professional atmosphere not knowing what to expect and what you’ll be doing. Not going to lie I was rather nervous, however, I had no reason to be and neither do you! I am going to let you in on my work placement process, experience and tips which will hopefully change all the negative views on work placements for good!

My Work placement process began at college in which I had to choose 3 sectors within business that I would like to focus on during my placement. This could have been sectors such as Banking, Law Trust etc. My three choices were Admin, Trust and law as they interested me the most. Tip 1 – Make sure you know what each sector means and consists of, this will make sure that you will get an insight into what jobs that sector consists of which will help you to decide whether this is something you want to do in the future, it will also ensure you aren’t bored or come across any nasty surprises on your placement.

I received an email from college saying that my tutors matched me with Park for the role of Administrative Assistant and that I had an interview with them that week. I was aware of Park as I had walked past their office many times and had seen that they are a recruitment agency however, what their jobs consisted of was beyond me. That’s when I decided to check their website, and thank goodness I did because I came across many different pages on their website such as the jobs sectors they recruit for and Temps which I knew nothing about before looking at their website. Tip 2 – Do your research on the company you are applying to because you are definitely going to be asked questions on what you know and it also shows your enthusiasm.

My interview was the next step in the process with Park. I met with both Megan and Celia who were both bubbly and welcoming. I was asked about myself at first in which I spoke about where im studying what im studying and what I get up to in my spare time. Throughout the interview I was asked a variety of open and closed questions about different things such as the work experience process and what exactly I am expecting, what tasks interest me and what I would like to cover. It felt more like a conversation, that I was being listened to and that they want me to get as much out of the placement as possible. By the end of the interview my nerves changed to excitement and I was rearing and ready to start. Tip 3 – Be confident and ask questions, remember not only are they looking for a good candidate but you also need to know if they can offer you what you’re looking for.

My first day had soon arrived I was both anxious and excited. When I arrived I was greeted by Celia who then introduced me to the whole team who were all lovely and welcoming also. I was then set up and introduced in depth to the reception and Park computer system which would be my domain for the next 2 weeks. I was then given my timetable for the two weeks, and then shown where everything was kept and how to work the system such as the emails, CRM which had all clients and candidate information, printer etc. It was rather complicated and so I needed help on certain tasks throughout the day however, the girls were very approachable and willing to help and would often check up on me and ask if I needed any help. My first day then turned into my first week. The week consisted of reception duties such as greeting and directing candidates, enquiries, scanning and printing, answering the phone, forwarding any information onto consultants, creating and filling in spreadsheets, writing CV’s, I was also given certain tasks which moved away from the general admin jobs such as, running errands, writing reports on competitive businesses and what they are doing, checking for any vacancies which we may not have. I was always busy with something and the variety of work was just what I wanted therefore by the end of my first week I felt like a part of the team, all my nerves had gone and I couldn’t wait for my second week.

The second week I was very confident with my role and the tasks in which I was to do. I would log onto the system and deal with any enquiries and do all admin jobs that needed doing. I would greet and direct candidates to the correct meeting room with the correct consultant and answer the phone with no worries at all. I was given further tasks to do that week such as deal with the temp worker’s timesheets and input their data onto a spreadsheet for reference and many other duties. Also, as Megan was back from her holidays she went into depth with me about what her duties are here at Park and what her Job consists of. I found out all about the temping system as it was rather confusing to understand who they are and the process, I also helped tidy up candidate’s documents so that they are easier to find. Tip 3 – Be positive and use your initiative, it’s always good to show an employer/ company that you are capable of finding jobs to do yourself and that you can turn your hand to anything even if you aren’t particularly enjoying it.

Overall, my experience at Park has been both informative and fun. I have learnt new things and have expanded on the knowledge I previously had on an administrative role. The girls have been extremely welcoming, helpful and friendly and I am very grateful to the girls for making my experience here very enjoyable.

Thank you Park!