“I became a lot more confident over the course of the year, which should stand me in good stead when networking in the future.”

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Sophia Montgomery, Accenture

BA Business Management with Industrial Placement

After a year’s internship with a high profile management and IT consultancy, Sophia is delighted to have been accepted onto their graduate scheme.

“I’ve always had an interest in working in a corporate environment and chose the Business School because I wanted to do a course that included a year in industry. At the start of my second year, the department sent out an email about a placement scheme at Accenture in central London. I went to an open day and then applied through their website. It was a quick process – the placement was organised within a month, which was great as it meant I didn’t have to worry about it for the rest of the academic year.

I chose the placement at Accenture because I liked the idea of working with so many different high profile clients – they deal with 96% of the top 100. I worked in their communication, media and technology area, spending six months working with clients in the electronic high tech industry, and the following six working with an international broadcasting company in the media and entertainment field. I love consulting because each day is different, and it’s very sociable. In the year I was there, I worked in a variety of teams and offices – from implementing and testing internal communications on a multinational project, to working for a large IT company onboarding offshore staff.  

Because the tasks I was involved in on my placement were so varied, I learnt both hard and soft skills – tangible skills in IT as well as confidence in communication. The organisational and time management skills I gained have definitely helped with my studies. Having worked 9-5 for a year, I now find it easier to structure my days at university, and feel a lot more in control of my time.

This year I’ve been working part time for the Careers Team, advising other students to take advantage of the service when securing a placement. I benefitted myself from CV and application checks, mock interviews and used the mock assessment centre. The feedback from the mock assessment centre was particularly useful as it was so detailed and personalised, highlighting my flaws and strengths, as well as giving me practical tips that gave me a real advantage when it came to the real thing.

The best thing about my placement year was gaining a graduate job at the end of it. I became a lot more confident over the course of the year, which should stand me in good stead when networking in the future – and I now know which areas of consulting I enjoy most, so I can put myself forward for those projects when they come up.

Overall, it’s great experience. I’m leaving university with many skills that my peers won’t have gained yet.”