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"I left university knowing that I wanted to go into a marketing agency. Having done my work experience year at a large technology corporation, although the big corporate grad schemes were attractive packages, I knew that the environment wasn't for me. I wanted to work somewhere fun, fast paced and exciting. My job search when finishing university wasn't easy, but eventually I found a job at a small local marketing agency in Reading. My job role was 'Project Manager' and I was responsible for running campaigns for clients in the small B2B arena across industries such as IT, Hospitality, Law, Pharmaceuticals and many more.
It was a small agency with less than 10 employees, which meant that I could try a bit of everything and get a real feel for how to run a business. I was thrown in at the deep end when it came to workload - I wanted to impress and as I was doing well, I was just given more and more work. Although I was given a great opportunity and really enjoyed working across so many clients, I was starting to feel overwhelmed with the workload and responsibility given to me. I didn't have any training and although I was doing well, I knew I could do better with the right guidance.
After 6 months there, I moved to a new company. They were a much bigger agency, working across several large IT clients. The experience is entirely different as I am now given far less responsibility and far more support and guidance. Sometimes I struggle with impatience, as I know I can do more, but I also know that I will prove myself over time, and be given more responsibility where due and when I have had enough experience to do the best job I possibly can. My time at the first agency wasn't easy, but gave me invaluable experience and a way into the advertising industry - for anyone who is willing to put the hours in and work on really exciting work a small company is a really great place to work."
KIRSTY, UNIVERSITY OF READING
"My final year dissertation was on the subject of 'Information and Communication Technology - a Global Analysis' focusing on fibre optics and my first job following graduation from my sandwich degree was in a notable telecommunications company in the North West of England where I was to become a medalist in graduate training. My first interview for the role of Purchasing Analyst was at the Summer Fair (where recruiters come to campus to evaluate the suitability of final year students for positions in their companies.) Following success at first interview I was invited for a second interview at the organisation.
The position of Purchasing Analyst was new to the company. My duties included the monitoring of buyers' performance, keeping contracts between buyers and vendors, vendor performance reviews, and the provision of a liaison role in the implementation of electronic data interchange. Multi-utility statistical and graphical computer packages were used to depict trends in performance. The results were discussed in regular meetings between my line manager and his managers. I represented my company in discussions with vendors and also conducted site visits with sister companies.
I developed an interest in computing and gained a secondment to the I.T. department where I was responsible, as Analyst/ Programmer, for the development and delivery of courses in Office Automation. I trained staff from a range of departments including Engineering and Marketing and developed a technical reference library and Personnel training database. I was nominated Team Leader, responsible for a communications project, the results of which were delivered to the Board of Directors and implemented."
JYOTI, UNIVERSITY OF MANCHESTER