17 year old Students Joseph and Owe recently joined Nationwide for a week’s work experience. During the week, they spent time with a variety of teams including Digital, HR and Business Transformation.
What the Lydiard Academy students did
During the week, Joseph and Owe were placed with different teams each day. This included Nationwide’s Creative agency, Digital Agile Team, Technical Development Programme, Employer brand and the Innovation lab.
“ Being told about the different options like University or an apprenticeship has helped me a lot; it’s allowed me to think more about what I want to do in the future; specifically whether I'll go to Uni or do an Apprenticeship. ”
At Nationwide, work experience is often arranged via a ‘host’: an existing Nationwide employee who is willing to host a student for 1-2 weeks. While the student can remain with their host during this time, where possible the host will look to secure placements within a number of different business areas.
The business areas chosen will depend on the placements key strengths and interests, as well as team availability:
“ Although Owe was my first student from Lydiard Park Academy, he was my 4th Work Experience placement this year. I like to speak to the students before they arrive as I try to tailor the experience according to their courses and career ambitions; It takes a little time to coordinate, but the different teams’ here have always been happy to support. I guess I enjoy providing some tangible insight for the students, and knowing that whatever decision they make on the back of their placements will be informed decisions. ”
What did the Lydiard Academy students learn?
“It was interesting to learn about ‘marketing funnels’, and how different teams work. The Agile team explained to us how their team operates, and talked us through a ‘sprint model’. I was also given other basic formalities like answering the phone and taking minutes in meetings; this meant jotting down ‘actions’ and a timeline of how things should proceed. Overall I learned a lot of different skills and the importance of asking questions. l enjoyed applying my academic knowledge to a working environment.” - Joseph.
“ It was interesting to meet so many different people and learn about their different academic paths and how they ended up at Nationwide. None of them regretted coming here, and I can see why. Spending time with the Technical Development Programme in particular helped me to decide what academic route I’m going to take; the TDP and other staff members were really informative. Although you don’t have to have a degree, for me the TDP definitely seems like a career I’d be interested in after I’ve been to University. ”
What the Lydiard Academy students enjoyed
“I found the overall working environment enjoyable; the building didn’t feel like a ‘work environment’; the head office has a gym, restaurant and a shop. I also liked learning about how interesting the different business areas are. All the staff members were really friendly too, and went out of their way to help me when they didn't need to, which is something I really appreciated.” - Joseph.
“ What I enjoyed most was that everyone is so chilled and down to Earth, I never thought that would be the case. I also really enjoyed meeting different people from different backgrounds daily. The people I met also showed me they take ‘PRIDE’ in the job role they have.…the chips were top notch as well! ”
What went well during their work experience
“Realising I’m not perfect, and increasing my capacity to learn, on my first day my host told me it was important to be honest; like admitting if you don't know something. It also helped me understand how some of my work related topics might not be needed now, but they could help me in the future.” - Joseph.
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