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To celebrate the incredible value grads add to our business we are catching up with some of our former grads to talk about their experiences within Admiral and the permanent roles they’re in now.
First up meet Bethan who started on the General Graduate Programme in February 2018 and has since taken up her permanent role in internal consultancy.
What did you study and at which university? What skills from your degree have helped you succeed at Admiral?
I studied Business Management at Cardiff university and specialised in Marketing. This degree gave me a good foundation in business, whilst also building on softer skills, such as presenting and teamwork. Following university, I worked at a start-up printing company in Nottinghamshire as their Sales and Marketing Manager. This helped me understanding more about how businesses work in practice and develop interpersonal skills before joining Admiral.
Tell us about your placements as an Admiral grad
My first placement was in the Product and Marketing team in AFSL (Admiral Financial Services Limited – our financial services branch) followed by a shorter stint in Commercial. During this time in AFSL, my responsibilities included optimising web journeys and meeting with partners. Following AFSL, I spent my second placement in the Household product team looking after InstaQuote. During this time, I focused on improving the online journey, as well as working closely with operations, underwriting and pricing to improve the product’s performance. For my final placement, I took all of the knowledge from Household in the UK and moved to Paris. For almost 10 months, I worked for L’olivier on the launch of home insurance in France. This involved lots of project management and product ownership.
What was your favourite part of working abroad?
Doing a placement abroad really pushes you out of your comfort zone. I was moving to a new country, where I couldn’t speak the language, and into an IT role, which was also brand new to me.
Whilst it wasn’t a holiday, I was still able to soak up Paris- I mean come on, you’re in Paris, you know? L’Olivier also have a contact centre in Lille, which I got to visit a few times as well as our European IT hub in Seville.
What tip would you give to someone considering a placement abroad?
Like I said, it isn’t a holiday because you are there to work, so just make sure that you’re doing it for the right reasons and really up for trying something new. I also think you have to being willing to make the extra effort. The L’Olivier office is a lot smaller than Ty Admiral- there’s only 50 people or so there- so it’s beneficial to make the extra effort with your colleagues. Also you’re only in that place for a certain length of time, so make sure that you get out and explore when you can!
I also think that learning the language basics before you go on your placement will help. I can still read French in emails and my colleagues’ social media!
What was your greatest achievement while you were on the programme?
I think my greatest achievement would have to be seeing the first sale of home insurance in L’Olivier go through was very exciting. It was rewarding to see where all my hard efforts had gone.
Tell us about your job now
I am now an internal consultant. I get to work with various departments across Admiral to help them with business issues they are facing and align it with Admiral’s strategy. I find it very interesting as I am continuously learning about new areas of the business and researching solutions to their problems.
What does your day-to-day look like?
My day completely varies day-to-day depending on the project and business needs. I could be doing anything from meeting with stakeholders, researching, creating presentations, finalising projects to smaller side pieces of work. Each large project varies in length, but they tend to be 3 to 6 months. I normally am working on about 2 projects at a time as well, so this job has really helped me hone my time management skills.
Did you expect to take this career path?
I never expected a career in consultancy, but I can see how the graduate scheme lead me here. On the graduate scheme, you work across such a range of areas and change every 6 months. You are constantly learning, then moving again- you have to become comfortable with being uncomfortable. Also, because of my time on the graduate scheme, I am able to relate back and have a bank of knowledge that I wouldn’t have gained any other way.
What do you enjoy most about working for Admiral?
There are three things that I really enjoy about working at Admiral. Firstly, the size of the business, since moving from a printing start up to a big business- it has emphasised the scale of Admiral to me. Admiral is so big that you just find it very hard to know it inside-out and that is something I really love. The second thing is the people I work with, everyone at Admiral is so open-minded and willing to listen to others ideas, thoughts and opinions. Then, the final point, which sounds cliché and overlaps a bit with the last point- is the culture at Admiral. The culture is so rare but everyone is so friendly, there’s emphasis placed on work-life balance and the benefits are good as well. There’s a focus on self-development through things like the Buy-A-Book Scheme and Admiral Academy.
What advice would you give someone thinking about applying?
I think it really is as simple as just be yourself. I think that goes for when applying and working at Admiral- it’s a very inclusive environment.