Doing a placement year is one of the best career decisions I ever made

Placement student Jo McGrannIn our latest blog we hear from Jo McGrann, BA (Hons) Advertising and Brand Management, who is currently working as a Marketing Assistant for No1 CopperPot Credit Union.

This time last year I was a stressed out 2nd year Advertising and Brand Management Student on the hunt for a placement year, researching every placement opportunity that came up and applying for everything that interested me.

One of the opportunities that came up was to work for No1 CopperPot Credit Union. Having never heard of the company before I was unsure what I would be getting myself in for, but I liked the sound of what it entailed and applied anyhow. After applying with an email, CV and covering letter I was happy to hear I was through to the next stage of interviews. The interview went well and the following day I was thrilled to hear I got the placement!
Tip: be confident, not cocky but confident. Show your possible employer that you’re confident in your abilities and they’ll be confident in hiring you (I had to practice this)!

The placement started in June last year and I was looking forward to the following 12 months. I soon found out that No1 CopperPot is a Credit Union for police officers, police staff, PCSOs and specials (anyone employed by the police) and they offer savings, loans and mortgages. Although this may sound like a bank it’s not – a credit union is a not for profit organisation that splits all of its profits with its members (whereas big banks may use their profits to give the bosses a big bonus). You could call it an ethical bank.

Now onto the work side of things…

  • The role includes being the face of the Credit Union and attending police events/conferences and explaining what we offer and answering any questions. You will meet a lot of new people doing this job!
  • I create a lot of adverts. We advertise on a lot of police websites and in magazines nationwide and I create the adverts on the Mac at the office. It is pretty exciting when you receive a publication in the post and your advert is inside it. If you have Photoshop/Illustrator experience then you will enjoy this placement.
  • I help to edit the website. The website always needs to be up to date and promoting new or seasonal products and we’re responsible for making this happen.
  • The marketing team helps with the launch of new products. This is something that I really enjoy – when a new product is being launched e.g. a new mortgage or savings bond, we’re responsible for the putting together the marketing material and sending it out to key people in the policing world to help spread the word.
  • Managing social media. We post things on social media to keep our brand seen and keep our members updated with what’s new. We are on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter so anyone interested in social media would be welcome to explore new ideas.

These are some of the more regular tasks but there are always new tasks that pop up each month. You’ll always be working on something new and creativity is very welcome here. No1 CopperPot will be advertising their placement opportunity for 2015/2016 very shortly so I would recommend anyone who is interested in anything that I’ve said then make sure you don’t miss out.

As a result of working here I am already much more confident in myself and my work, my design skills have improved which inevitably will help me in my final year of advertising, and I have a real understanding of what a professional career is like – graduating doesn’t seem that scary anymore! Doing a placement year is one of the best career decisions I’ve ever made.

No1 CopperPot Credit Union are now recruiting for their 2015/16 Marketing Placement for full details please visit the MMU Placement Vacancy System

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