Lawrence’s Story: from the Welsh Financial Services Graduate Program to the Admiral Graduate Scheme
Lawrence joined Admiral in March 2016 as part of his rotations on the Welsh Financial Services Graduate Program and was able to move across onto to the Admiral Graduate Scheme starting September 2016. If you'd like to experience Admiral for yourself, you can apply to our summer internship.
Can you tell us a little bit about your background?
I actually studied History at Cardiff Uni and then took 2 ½ years off before doing an MSc in Financial Services Management through the Welsh Financial Services Graduate Program. The programme offered a mix of education and experience and it was the experience aspect I was particularly interested in.
Tell us a bit about your time on the Welsh Financial Services Graduate Program?
There was only a short induction before we went on our first placements, which was great, as I wanted the experience. My first placement was with a trade credit insurer and I enjoyed working there a lot. However, as they have been doing the same thing for so long they are set in their ways a bit, so there is little innovation and it is quite an old-fashioned workplace. My next placement was at Admiral, which is a very different environment. I also spend a few hours a week doing university work towards my part-time Masters.
What was your placement at Admiral like?
I spent the first five days doing a Claims induction to get used to the jargon and car insurance more generally.
I then moved straight into Risk, where my placement was. I was quite nervous when I started, as it was a small team and I was going to be looking at something I had little knowledge of. It took a little while to get up to speed, but after a few weeks I became more comfortable. The team was great in supporting me and helping me to round out my knowledge.
As I learnt more I was encouraged to become more independent and I picked up loads of skills and behavioural traits along the way. I also met lots of people and departments which was great.
What exactly were you working on?
I was looking at how data flows around the company and creating process flows to visualise this. I had to learn to use various software and systems, as well as work with lots of different people. I was given the basis of what I needed and then had to teach myself, which I enjoyed.
How did you end up on the Admiral Graduate Scheme?
I was proactive in wanting to stay, so I went to speak to Jane (Graduate Scheme Manager at the time) and asked whether there was any possibility of me staying at Admiral when my six months were up. Jane mentioned that previously people from Financial Services Program had moved onto the Admiral grad scheme and suggested this to me. After two interviews and a positive review from my current manager it was a yes!
What was it that attracted you to Admiral?
I had looked at opportunities across all the companies participating in the Welsh Financial Services Graduate Program and found the opportunities at Admiral the most interesting. Admiral is very innovative and technology focused - two things I am really interested in, so the possibility to work in these areas on the graduate scheme was really attractive.
I also liked the trust and autonomy I was given during my placement and staying on the Admiral graduate scheme was a great opportunity to stay somewhere I enjoyed working and where I could continue learning and developing myself.
What are you doing on your current placement at Admiral?
My new placement is right up my street as it’s focussed around innovation and technology. I am working in the New Business Value Team with the head of MultiCover focusing on our cross-selling technique throughout the different phases of the customer journey. The outcome of my placement will be a report with my recommendations for future technologies and process improvements. This again involves working with a lot of people and departments so I am really enjoying my time here.
I have also continued studying towards my Masters degree, which my manager has been very understanding of. She allows me some work time towards this as long as it doesn’t interfere with my day-to-day job.
Any idea where you will go for your next placement?
I am hoping to move on to CCS (Customer Contact Strategy), where I will be doing similar work to my current placement, but with more attention paid to the customer’s side. I will be looking at customer touch points and the customer journey, as well as getting to grips with the technology side, e.g. text analytics and maybe even some work on the customer portal. The point of this placement is to understand when and why we contact customers.
Any tips for somebody thinking of doing a placement or internship at Admiral?
You need to be outgoing, attentive and willing to learn. It’s a very open culture - if you want to learn something Admiral is willing to teach you, so seek out opportunities to learn and develop and get what you can out of it.
What do you like best about working here?
Free fruit! On a serious level, I feel trusted and valued and these things are irreplaceable in the workplace. I very much enjoyed my first placement, but I never felt like I was going to have any permanence there and here I feel like part of something.
Watch our quick video below to find out about our undergraduate summer internship: