Graduate blogs

Success Stories: from placement year to Citi, New York

In need of some placement search inspiration? Then look no further! In this blog post we hear from Ben Annis a BA (Hons) Accounting and Finance graduate (2014) who completed a placement in 2012/13 and is now working for Citi in New York City.

Placement graduate Ben Annis

Where did you complete your placement?

I spent my year working for ConocoPhillips in London.

 What did you do on placement?

I was effectively the middle man between finance and the trading floor.  I reported the P&L for my 12 products traders on a monthly basis and if they had any queries about these deals/numbers they would come and ask me.

I also had to communicate with other teams within the organisation particularly in our headquarters in Houston, Texas.

How do you feel your placement helped you?

For me the placement was one of the best things I could have done.  The one year experience got me interviews all around the world narrowly missing out to people in the final rounds.Placement graduate Ben Annis in New York

I stopped applying for graduate roles in around March but then I heard about the Mountbatten Programme through Manchester Metropolitan University.  I went to the presentation they gave in the Business School and a few months later here I am in New York City working for Citi in Manhattan.

I could not have obtained this without my placement since they require a year of relevant work experience to apply.  My current boss also told me that my experience is what attracted them to me.

As a side note I also think taking a placement made me more focused in my final year and made it easier for me to obtain my degree.

What advice would you offer students who are currently searching for a placement?

Be flexible and apply to a range of companies. You might not think this is your ideal job but it is only for 12 months (which flies by) and it will certainly benefit you after you graduate to get your dream job.

What advice would you offer students who are currently out on placement?

I would tell them to make the most of it, before you know it you will be saying your goodbyes.

Make sure you get exposure to as much of the business as possible to increase your knowledge and understanding.

Finally, make sure you have built a good network and relationships with your boss and even his/her boss if possible. These are the people who are going to be giving you references and being the influencer if you apply for a job back with the company a few months down the line.