By Guy Bloodworth on Tue 06 August 2019 in Placement Blog
Hear all about Guy's placement year at ProspectSoft and the incredible impact he's made!
I began my placement over a year ago now, so with just under 1 month left until I wrap up my year, I thought it would be a good opportunity to reflect on my time at ProspectSoft and tell you about some of my highlights!
I chose to do a placement as an optional part of my Business and Marketing Degree at the University of Lincoln, and after many phone interviews and a few Assessment Centres, I was delighted to secure a placement at ProspectSoft.
Doing a placement year is an invaluable experience, as it sets you up perfectly for leaving University and entering the world as a graduate. I’ll now leave my placement with 13 months of real experience in a wide range of marketing-based areas.
The first big project I was challenged with in my placement was creating our NUE Awards application video. The awards are hosted by RateMyPlacement and are recognised on a national scale.
The video creation process was lengthy and it involved me writing a script for everyone that was going to be in the video, organising filming times in everyone’s calendars, filming everyone’s parts, and finally getting to grips with Adobe Premiere Pro and After Effects well enough to edit the whole thing and create animations (check out my blog about my experience creating the NUE Awards application here!). A few months after submitting this application, we found out we were shortlisted, so attended the Awards in London, and were lucky enough to secure a win (7th time for ProspectSoft!). Of course, the day was filled with beers and a few proseccos here and there!
Another huge highlight from my year at ProspectSoft was the recruitment process I handled for our next intake of placements. This was a really interesting process to be a part of, as it gave me an insight into recruitment from the side of the employer (having done my fair share as the candidate!). This included screening hundreds of CVs and Cover Letters, conducting Telephone Interviews, and running an Assessment Centre, which included making decisions on who should (and shouldn’t) go through to the next stage. This was a huge amount of responsibility, and with the support from my manager I was able to confidently make my decisions, right up to the point of helping choose who should get the job – that’s where I handed the decision making over to our Sales and Marketing Director, Stuart, and our Head of Marketing, Jess! If you’re interested in hearing more about my experiences managing the recruitment and learning some tips on how to improve your own phone interviews, you can read all about it here!
Towards the end of 2018, I was lucky enough to seize an opportunity that opened up a plethora of work which definitely challenged me and helped me significantly develop my skills. A new start-up company was formed by a few senior members of the ProspectSoft team, following the realisation of a business opportunity. Zing was born, a company focused on developing large scale, highly powerful software solutions for big companies with the desire to disrupt their industry. I went on to undertake a lot of work for Zing, but first, let me tell you how I came to be in this lucky position as a placement student!
Over the first 6 months of my placement I had become quite skilled in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, and just before Christmas, my manager, Jess, had spoken to the Zing founder about the marketing challenges they faced as a start-up business. One of these challenges was creating a logo that really represented the company’s vision, mission and values. So, Jess suggested that I had a go at putting something together. Although at first I struggled to get the design to look right, I persevered, and ended up creating somewhere between 10 and 20 designs. I eagerly put my designs forward to Jess and the Zing team, and it was a result! One of my designs caught their eye and, after some tweaking of my original design, I came to a final design that is now Zing’s logo. This has since been printed on posters, t-shirts, signs, and has been used across all Zing’s digital marketing collateral!
At the time, I had absolutely no idea that my proactive choice in making those designs would spur me to take a lead role in the branding and overall marketing of Zing – developing brand guidelines, creating and running all social media accounts, creating the Zing website and business cards, getting promotional products printed, filming and editing promotional content, and being included in marketing decisions for the company – working closely with the Zingers and my manager throughout. Undertaking all of these jobs whilst also continuing with my work for ProspectSoft was tough, but very rewarding, and I’m so delighted to have been given the opportunity to get involved with everything!
My biggest advice to anyone reading this blog is to be proactive in whatever role you undertake, and the opportunities will follow. I’ve had a great year working for ProspectSoft (and Zing!), and I feel I have developed so much as an individual. I’ve learned valuable skills that will put me in a favourable position when I pursue my career after I graduate from University.
For now, it’s time for me to round up and to welcome in the new placements, deliver some training, say my goodbyes, and then I’ll be returning to University to complete my final year – and of course make my return to student nights out on a Wednesday!