Careers and Placements Behind the Scenes: Operations

AyoadeFinal Year, First Year, On Placement, Postgraduate, Second Year

Careers and Placements Behind the Scenes: Operations

As a freshman, I felt nervous about my career and struggled to share my concerns with others. I was made aware of Careers and Placements through a lecture, but didn’t feel confident to approach them and ask for help. In second year, I felt insecure about finding opportunities for my placement… until I booked an appointment with a Placement Coordinator. She reviewed my CV, and was able to boost my confidence by highlighting skills I didn’t even consider to be important.

For my placement year, I decided to join the department to help others as well. I work in the Operations team, who are responsible for all sorts of things that keep the department running smoothly. This includes running internal assessment centres, working with student data, running the student-facing Front Desk, and much more. There’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes!

As an Operations Assistant, I get to meet various people from students and graduates to colleagues in and outside the centre, and I play a part in assisting them with their queries. As part of my role, I support the wider team with administrative tasks and these can vary. I love how it keeps me on my toes, as sometimes I do not know what to expect.

I’ll let you in on a day as an Operations Assistant: I start my day by checking out my inbox and I making any updates to my calendar and note pad, this helps me to track my tasks for the day and current week. The time I am not scheduled to be on Front Desk, either as the morning or afternoon shift, I focus on tasks that I know will take a bit of time. These tasks vary from attending meetings, doing data work, to planning for internal assessment days. Front Desk is a major part of my role, I get to interact with students and sometimes employers over the phone or via email. Front Desk is the fort port of call for any queries, so if you email, or call the team, it’ll likely be us that picks up!

After six months of working in the department, I am amazed at the positive culture of all members of staff in Careers and Placements. They are very helpful and supportive: from reviewing my write-ups, answering my questions to asking for my contribution during meetings. It’s greatly boosted my confidence. Also, I am always encouraged to see my placement as an opportunity to learn different transferable skills, that always come in handy in any job specification. For example, I attend training sessions to improve my Excel literacy and participate in events for students that are available on Aston Futures.

I strongly encourage anyone unsure about their future to check out the Careers website and to reach out, it is crucial to make the first step and you will be supported with the rest.

So, what are you waiting for? Get in touch with us, if you have any queries, we are very happy to help.

Written by Ayoade Folorunso

Photo by Samantha Gades on Unsplash