As well as looking to gain relevant work experience, I wanted to try something a little different on my placement. That's why I chose to work as a recruitment consultant in the Life Sciences department of Hays Recruitment in London.
My role involved understanding the needs of clients, and then seeking suitable candidates to fill the vacancies for which they were recruiting.
I've come away with far better 'soft' business skills - negotiation, communication, working with people - all of which are important for my own future jobs. Additionally, I discovered that a passion for people is vital when working in recruitment, and was very evident in my colleagues. I loved their energy and commitment to the industry.
My placement changed my approach to university and view of my future career. This experience will definitely help direct my own future job applications. It's shown me I need a challenging and mentally stimulating work environment.
I definitely recommend doing a placement. Consider the work environment you're after, prepare early and don't delay your applications or be put off applying if you think you'll be unsuccessful.
You may miss a great opportunity and, besides, any application and interview practice is beneficial.